It was about being buried, alive or in a dream sequence and surrounded by soft flesh. No hard edges, no angles; of yielding and the sculpture of his body enfolded within some artist’s tempered grasp. Smaller fingers that his, tracing a route down to where they naturally stop. That’s what he often thought about when he was tired of the day-to-day of taking orders.
He also imagined a blue stone set in filigree argent or a delicately engraved dress-ring, discreet on occasion, peeking out to him from beneath his cuffs; not quite the heavy calico that scratched over the dark hairs on the back of his wrist, The ship was hot, men were fractious in their absence from home and bad weather reports were in.
His fantasies began modestly, from his eyelids, through his neck, across his back and down through the slip in his chest until the slightest extremities of perfumed affection reached…
His mother had used zinc powder, which had successfully given him his shape, His sister’s was the same.. He hadn’t spent time looking at too many others; that might have provided unwelcomed attentions. But, he naturally liked to match. It’s an unofficial club, that tiny step out, that tiny step in.
He was most definitely in and later, on his bunk, unable to sleep in the midst of a kneading the vessel was enduring, he contemplated the possible membership numbers of either group. But the soft curvings of gentle downy stomachs just lead him to imagine tattoos and body piercings; created an image of horror and degradation, leaving him no option but to throw out the tiny topaz and white gold he had otherwise planned for another life.
Make a mental note: quick, check, look down, leave inny in. Leave for someone else to fill.
Text: © Naval by Jane L. Nash
Drawing: © Predrag Pajdic, pen & Ink on canvas, 101.5 x 76 cm, 2000
Music: Frédéric Chopin (1810 – 1848) Nocturne in E flat major, Op. 9, No. 2, played by Arthur Rubinstein in 1965. The Nocturnes, Op. 9 are a set of three nocturnes written by Chopin between 1830 and 1832 and dedicated to Madame Camille Pleyel. The work was published in 1833. Music image: First few bars of Chopin’s Nocturne Op 9, No 2. Published in 1882.