Children of the future age,
Reading this indignant page,
Know that in a former time
Love, sweet love, was thought a crime.
-- William Blake
Once again I have been reading and gazing upon the sometimes beautiful, often hellish but always visionary works of William Blake. This drawing-- "The Night of Enitharmon's Joy" struck a particular chord in me today. Enitharmon is so peaceful, even when surrounded by demons. You can tell she finds blackest night and devilry to be matters-of-course.
Thought: I refuse to stem the the occasional tide of undirected, yet radiant loving energy I feel when I'm at work. This is, perhaps, a mistake? Should I hide my light under a bushel basket even while stripping? Just a thought because:
I felt a lightning bolt of attraction for a customer yesterday evening that shook me up quite a lot. In fact, I believe it's been about a year since I felt such an instant rapport with a man-- we seemed to be on the same wavelength, instantly. Though this customer comes in most weeks, I've never had the opportunity to speak with him before. Another woman always seems to get to him first, and, because he spends most of his time upstairs, he is never on the floor for long. He wears beautiful Italian suits with high, aristocratic collars, has pleasing, symmetrical features, large, hypnotic eyes and a shockingly beautiful body.
After a few minutes of interesting conversation he bought a dance, and I stripped off my dress and ran my hands down his muscular arms, sinking briefly to my knees while looking up at him. As in a fever dream I imagined the two of us alone, and all the delicious things he might do to me as I knelt before him in such a submissive posture. It made me dizzy.
He asked me what else I do with my time, and I actually told him that I write for a feminist publication instead of my usual lie about being a student. We discussed various schools of feminist thought and social mores. In response to his query about my particular brand of feminism, I said that I equate feminism with freedom.
I looked steadily in his eyes. "I'm also very submissive."
"I know," he answered simply, the way a discerning man in a hurry (which he was) sees a watch he likes in a shop window and buys it instantly, and without fanfare.
"I know you know, because you're clearly very dominant." I suddenly found myself wanting to kiss him, which was a first for me regarding a customer.
"Yes I am," he answered with warmth but no fire. I wasn't sure if he was being a gentleman or trying to make me feel I hadn't earned it quite yet.
I smiled but did not laugh, because I could somewhat intuit that he was about to attempt to seduce me. My usual coquetry was strangely absent, as if my genuine attraction for him had stripped me of all my sham sexuality. In spite of myself I suddenly recognized that we were in agreement about something deep I didn't care to analyze. Not that it had to go anywhere, of course.
"I know you're going to say something that really surprises me," I said in the soft voice that passes as a whisper in a loud strip club, as I writhed nearly nude on his lap.
He obliged by asking me to come with him to his friends home in the Hamptons for the weekend. The train was leaving in half an hour. Of course I declined. He tried mightily to convince me, but I'd be a fool to date a customer. Especially one with money who comes in fairly often, and spend hours at a time in the champagne room with girls he likes. Why give anything to him for free?
"Well, we missed a fun opportunity, but you'll see me around again," he added with a smile as our dance and my shift ended simultaneously.
"Was that the royal we?" I asked rhetorically and with playful scorn, suddenly feisty and unwilling to be included against my will in his statement.
"Have a lovely weekend," I said in parting as I added his money to the roll on my ankle garter and bounded downstairs to get dressed in my street clothes. Suddenly I wanted to get away from him and the strip club and blot out the memory of all the other overwhelming propositions and soulless seduction attempts by strange men I'd fielded lately. None of them meant anything for more than five minutes, after all.
I decided everything about Tryst is meant to be forgotten after my work day/night ends, and I mean to be more assiduous in my efforts to do so from now on. Nothing that happens there is going to carry an ounce of weight in my real life anymore. Other nighttime fantasies pale in the morning light, why should not those I create as a stripper follow suit?
(Scary aside-- a super-creepy customer kept trying to convince a dancer from work to go home with him. "No." she said perpetually. When he asked why, she said: "Because you might chop me up in a million pieces and throw me in the East River." He replied, "No-- I'd only chop you up into three pieces.")
PS Afterward at a restaurant some asshole construction worker sat next to me, got absolutely in my face and wouldn't stop hitting on me no matter what I said.
"It's because I'm black, isn't it?" he asked.
I gave him a withering look. He was undeterred.
"You got a boyfriend?" he asked. He was loathsome. I imagined cutting his tongue out with a scalpel and rubbing his fat, ugly face in his own blood.
"Do *YOU* have a boyfriend?" I asked in return, wishing someone would come and shoot him nobly on my behalf. Nobody did, so I left, as he unleashed a loud torrent of profanity and insults so disgusting everyone turned around to look. Awesome.
I'm so full of anger right now. Recounting the experiences make me feel that I was genuinely abused, and that I hate life. At least I can be grateful enough to say this is the first encounter I've had with such an awful stranger since I moved to New York two years ago.
PS2 I still haven't gotten a new phone. I don't care anymore. I don't want to talk to anyone right now.