even as there was no blindfold, i was not to look at him.
during the long ride into the countryside, i watched as the snowstorm gradually engulfed us.
to give me the appearance of being dressed, he placed his black coat and cap over me.
in the car he had the vents on full, training all their cold air toward me.
perhaps an hour had passed in silence when we came to a destination.
he brought out a bottle of water. to my lips. i drank. i drank and soon the bottle was empty.
before he went around the car to open my window he placed an apple between my legs. then he was gone. disappeared into the landscape beyond the road while the white frozen minutae of stars skipped thru the window and onto the apple, onto my thighs.
my left hand i could use. my right was bound, completely, in a coil of white rope that also enveloped entirely my right leg, deviating only to tie the left at the ankle.
time passed. a long time. even as my form ached with sensitivity, with hunger, and as my body struggled to keep the water warm in my bladder, i remained still.
the sound of my stomach is audible, like the voice of a beggar- persistent, low. my feet are the color of tiny spring flowers. blue, blue and the lightest pink. i catch my face smiling- thinking of the beauty to be found in the traps. Trap of body, trap of mind.
soundlessly he appears again. arriving at the door- opening it. lifting the hat to brush my hair and scalp quickly thru with his fingers.
the apple is shoved between my lips and teeth. he lifts me from the seat. hovering over the white ground he says one word and i release the water in me.
his hands are warm, and where he touches feels on fire.
precious rush of sensation again as he sets me back into the seat. blood coursing fast thru extremities.
he instructs me to bite the apple and eat it.
Take Your Free Hand.
Hold The Apple.
Taste, Bite, Chew, Swallow.
I hear his voice and want terribly to look into the green flash and flame of his gaze. the power of it holds me down. but i know it is there and the sheer strength of its attentiveness takes my breath away.
he stands at the open car door, watching me eat. i'm too slow.
so faster i go. he tears the core from my hand, flinging it into the clouded wilderness as i gasp and swallow the last of the tart fruit.
his warm mouth smashes against my lips and teeth. his tongue a rampant thing. he is clearing up the taste of the apple as much as the taste of me.
just as quickly the kiss is snatched away and the door is shut with a brutal finesse.
breathe. breathe hard in the beat before he returns. touch your mouth without thinking, then take your hand away as fast as you can, remembering...
he's watching you, he's taking his time looking, observing, watching you, and you are not to look.
silence. just your heartbeat, breath, silence. so close and galaxies away- silence.
i jump at the sound of his door. he is in and the car is alive again with its noise. from cold to warm to hot. he switches the vents on me. a mercy.
around fast around and we are back on the roadway, making for somewhere else that could be home, or could not be.
the blossoms of my feet ache as they thaw. i take deep breaths and listen also for his calculated aspirations. i think i'm hallucinating when he says my name.
I Love You.
buried deep in his clothes, in his rope, in his ride, in his warmth.
even as there was no blindfold, i was not to look at him. not to speak.
but i could smile. so i did.
< Cassandra Troyan
Elaine Sun >