"Meeting Mrs Potiphar"
She devised a meeting ‘just as friends'
Evening drinks in her favourite bar
(Soigné and the food is good)
Her finely plaited ribboned hair
Smelled of woody sandalwood.
[Women's yoga was the excuse she used
to fool her husband, ‘estranged' (or so she claimed)
But in her mind was ‘union’ with me - a different kind]
She said I had to walk her home,
“The streets are deadly, dangers lurking everywhere.”
She chose the cycle track route back
I trotted along beside
And in a dark space where lamps' light
did not meet
she stopped and kissed me
She filled my mouth with a probing tongue
then drew back, brushed long black hair from her cheek
bashfully dipped her eyes and simpered,
“I love you…
I love you…
I love you”
The most beautiful woman I had ever seen
This unbelievably wonderful being loved me?
I drowned in her eyes…I was hooked.
Not mother, not wife, nobody
Outside coital ecstasy
Had ever said that to me.
“I love you”
And I was hooked.
We kissed again at the path's end
And I to my dark solitary house
And she to her husband (estranged)
I should have run away
Like Joseph from Potiphar's wife
I knew it! I knew it! I knew it!
But I was hooked.
Unholy places we sanctified with our coupling
As we feasted on each other
and sometimes not.
Feeding the insatiable worm within with all we had
Our very selves – our souls.
We lusted in hotels,
and seedy b'n'bs
knee trembling in alleyways,
against garage walls by necessity.
A carriage on the Settle to Carlisle
swaying and rattling
me, us and the train.
And naked, deep in a bush,
on the Cleveland Way
properly dressed seal spotters rambled past
looking the other way, they
missed more than bobbing heads at sea.
I offered my heart on a silver charger
She held it aloft like
A Burn's Night trophy haggis to be lauded
then sliced, diced, chewed and excreted
Or an enemy head staked high on a city wall.
She said her heart was mine too,
But that was “strictly entre nous”.
No one must ever know
Especially not her husband (estranged)
“There was nothing to be gained”.
But after my three best moves
And both favourite positions failed to satisfy
the frisson flattened and frustrated
She sauntered off
Hunting another that
Might…just… satisfy the worm within.
Keeping my heart
Locketed, closeted, festering.
I begged her to return my heart
Give it back to me
Give it back.
“It is not your heart now – it's mine – you gave it willingly”
Like a banqueting roistering nobleman might,
Carelessly, half-heartedly chucking a bone
to a hungry hound
She threw a heart piece to the ground
and nudged it to me with her shoe.
“There's enough there – it'll do…for you”
Unlike devoted long married couples,
Old conjoined souls who die in swift order
The second before the first is even cold
Life is never complete for the young
with a busted soul and half a heart
who are denied easy passing –
the release that
that sweet, gentle,
good night brings.
The wages of sin ain't death
But a torment far far worse
Long life with unquenchable thirst.