Fidelity is an illusion. I have always cheated on my wives, and they have all cheated on me. Women lie. Men lie. That’s life. I am very faithful, but not as far as sex goes. Sex is part of life and it’s as natural as breathing. Don’t ruin it with false morals or too much thinking.
Don’t get attached, for I will not love you. I don’t love anyone, apart from my children. Women have broken my heart too often, I refuse to love any of you. Any more…
I can swear anything you want me to: on the head of my children or my mother or put my hand the bloody Bible if anyone asks me to swear to something, what do I care, I’m not a believer. But if I give you my word… ah! My word…
These are your best days. Live them to the full. I see my ex-wives and loads of women over fifty, they still have the desire, but their best days are done. I even give my ex-wives tips on how to pull a bloke on the internet cos they don’t know how and it gets harder the older you get as a woman. You, you are in your prime. Live without regret.
The first thing She does when She gets in is to check the sheets. For stains. For ruffles. The first thing I do once my ladylove leaves is to do the sheets. Pull them straight, or at least Her side, and maybe leave the bed unmade so it looks as if I’ve just got up. I keep my ladylove on my side of the mattress. Get her not to wear any strong perfumes or creams and that stuff. I want to smell you, not some high-tech lab that lines its pockets with all your female complexes. She’ll check the sheets. I’ve been loving and lying for decades, so let Her.
I can feel the tension between you and You Know that you’re not even able to retain behind the wall of your teeth when you talk about the two of you. It pours out of you like a gas. It’s purely thanks to your decent upbringing that the two of you desist from bashing each other. And it’s all to do with sex. Sex is the most destructive, the most creative force in the world. And I, I spread the good news, like Jesus. I say Love, but nobody wants to listen. I threaten them, their old established values that they blindly hang on to like a flea on the backside of some beast. I threaten their world order. People are so afraid of change, I’m amazed we’ve even made it so far. And in their fear, they will lash out and crucify me. Blot out my light with their broad reproachful shoulders, flagellate those whom I have redeemed till they bend, till they bow, unable to seek solace in a promised land, which is none other than this one. Right here. Right now. I must die. And you, you, too, will kill me. One day. One day you won’t need me anymore. I’m just a palliative. You will move on. And I will die. On the inside.
(from Carmina’s Burana, Take One, in The Red Room)
You cannot love a man for all your life.
But you can live with him. You can live with him whilst you love him, though sooner or later, that love will fade to irritation and putrefy to hate. The art therein is to wait.
Wait… Till hate has healed to indifference, then you will find him livable once more,
beyond hate’s horizon;
from the better,
to the worse, to the:
oh well, I guess that’ll just have to do.
For it will, you know.
How courageous are you, daughter of mine?
How steady, or ready to go it alone,
if you believe yourself to have outgrown the love that made you bloom
before it made you wither?
A man should
be your reason to be,
so let him be; let him stay around,
on the periphery.
on my finger?
Take a good look.
Been there for centuries.
It’s on my finger, right?
Not in my mind…
Daughter of mine, your skin still so smooth,
You have so much time…
your pretty, dainty hands. Where’s your ring?
Oh, that’s right, you have never wanted one. Your mother took hers off, too, after all those years, tho the bloody thing refused to budge and after grease and spit and nothing else would do, I had to get an old pair of pliers to cut the thing in two.
You have never wanted one,
you think you don’t
only you can tell.
Cover my desiccated hands with your freshness.
What was I saying?
But you know, men?
They’ll always be around.
That’s the problem,
so might as well learn
to live wiv em.
(from Genderlogue, in The Red Room)
When my gran comes with this old time talk about how good we wimmin have it today and she can’t understand why so many relationships split up cos hell, they had it real hard back then but they’re still together. They had a long day’s work and still had to come home and cook and clean and boil the shit out of nappies whereas today all we do is buy and throw away. We live in a throw away society, she bemoans, and we’ve thrown away an eye for what really counts. She says we’re spoilt! I say gran, by all respect, if you’ve got the right to vote, had people fight for your right to vote and then you get it after all this time, fool for you if you don’t use it. I say I can’t imagine a slave staying on once (s)he has the right to be free, but she says the comparison ain’t valid, a husband’s not your master, and I’ve been spending too much time in the wrong company that much was plain to see. A husband’s not your master, I say? Great, we agree that we’re equals, then? I say, if he can fuck around, I can fuck around. These here are modern times. And she says, you don’t have to stoop as low as they do. You gots to keep your dignity. And watch your language! I say, where’s the dignity in that, grandma? Well, she says, if you can’t take it, his womanising, cos they can’t help it, it’s in their nature, then get out, but don’t stoop as low as him; all those years of schoolin n still so stupid, child? Always make sure you can walk with your head held high. God gave you a brain and it’s not between your legs and it’s not just there to keep your ears in place, so use it. Who’s he foolin around with, then, grandma, I ask. Is he foolin around with a sheep? Is he foolin around with a dog? If he’s foolin around with another woman, then isn’t it in our nature, too? If you’re a whore, alright, she says, but I don’t want no whores in my family. If God had wanted men and wimmin to be the same, He’d have made em the same. He didn’t, so don’t you think you can do better. They’re one half and you’re the other half. Make sure you’re the better half and not no whore. I ain’t no whore, grandma, I’m just a woman. A modern woman. I want to say, with needs, but I know better. A modern woman, are you, she snorts. Well, don’t be. Be an intelligent one. And hold your heddup!