Thursday, 30 July 2015

Billy Bathgate by E.L. Doctorow: Sex Scene 2

The thing about Drew was she was not genitally direct, she wanted to kiss my ribs and my white boyish chest, she held my legs and ran her hands up and down the backs of my thighs, she caressed my ass and sucked my earlobes and my mouth, and she did all these things as if they were all that she wanted, she made small editorial sounds of approval or delectation, as a commentator to the action, little single high notes, whispers without words like remarks to herself, it was as if she was consuming me as an act of eating and drinking, and it wasn't designed to arouse me, what boy in that situation needed arousal? from the moment she stopped the car I was tumescent, and I waited for some acknowledgment from her that this was in fact part of me too but it didn't come and it didn't come and I flared through my need into an exquisite pain, I thought I would go mad, I became agitated and discovered only then her availability, that in all of this she was only waiting for me to find her absolute willingness to be still and listen to me for a change. This was so girlish of her, so surprisingly restrained and submissive, I was not artful but simply myself and this brought forth from her a conspiratorial laughter, it gave her the pleasure of generosity to have me in her, it was not an excitement but more like a happiness of having this boy in her, she wrapped her legs around my back and I rocked us up and down in the back seat of the car with my feet sticking out of the open door, and when I came she held her arms around me tight enough to stop my breath and she sobbed and kissed my face as if something terrible had happened to me, as if I had been wounded and she was, in an act of desperate compassion, trying to make it as if it had not happened.

Then I was following her stark naked through the brush into this noplace of such great green presence she had chosen arbitrarily or by happenstance, with her gift for centering the world around herself, so that it was all very beautifully central in my mind, the place to be, following her flashing white form around trees, under tangles, avoiding the whip of branches, with a brilliant chatter of communities of unseen birds telling me how late I was to have found it. And then we were going generally downward, and the ground became swampy and the air close and I found myself slapping at stings in my skin, I had wanted to catch her, tackle her and fuck her again, and she was doing this to me, taking me into furies of mosquitoes. But I came upon her squatting and ladling handfuls of mud over herself and we applied this cold mud to each other and then we walked like children into the sinking darkness of forest, hand in hand like fairy-tale children in deep and terrible trouble, as indeed we were, and then we found ourselves at this still pond as black as I had ever seen water to be and of course she waded in and bid me to follow and my God it was fetid, it was warm and scummy, my feet were in wet mats of pond weed, I treaded water to keep my feet from sinking and couldn't crawl back out fast enough but she swam on her back a few yards and then came crawling out on all fours, and she was covered with this invisible slime, her body was slimed as mine was and we lay in this mud and I punched into her and held her blond head back in the mud and pumped slime up her and we lay there rutting in this foul fen and I came and held her down and wouldn't let her move, but lay in her with her breath loud in my ear, and when I lifted my head and looked into her alarmed green eyes in their panic of loss, I grew hard again right in her and she began to move, and this time we had the time, by the third time it takes its time, and I found the primeval voice in her, like a death rattle, a shrill sexless bark, over and over again as I jammed into her, and it became tremulous a terrible crying despair, and then she screamed so shriekingly I thought something was wrong and reared to look at her, her lips were pulled back over her teeth and her green eyes dimmed as I looked in them, they had lost sight, gone flat, as if her mind had collapsed, as if time had turned in her and she had passed back into infancy and reverted through birth into nothingness, and for an instant they were no longer eyes, for an instant they were about to be eyes, the eyes of soullessness.

Yet a few moments later she was smiling and kissing me and hugging me as if I had done something dear, brought her a flower or something.

Posted here for discussion purposes, in this essay.

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