Old Dreams

The tragedy of sexual intercourse is the perpetual virginity of the soul.

    - William B. Yeats

When I was a child, I dreamed of life as a game being played all around me. Someone–the scorekeeper–was keeping close tabs on me, or perhaps on all of us. When I kept quiet and in my own head, I could break ahead of the curve and be prepared for the new things life would bring. I felt like I was ever so slightly smarter than life expected me to be, and so, with proper planning and a great deal of self-control I could surprise life.

When I was a boy, I had a dream that one day sex would awaken me from this game. I would be there, in the moment, and suddenly I would be turned around, as if for all my life I was a separate person held to a mask. In that mask was my life and I was pressed to it so closely that I couldn’t pull back. Or perhaps the process of being born into this life lost that memory, and so I am stuck here because of my ignorance. Would death release the mask? Would sex?

O, train me not, sweet mermaid, with thy note,

to drown me in thy sister’s flood of tears.

    - William Shakespeare - The Comedy of Errors (1592 - 1594)

My life over the past ten years had been particularly prurient. Life and relationships have been guided by my salacious desires much more than anything else. It’s been the cause of much of my pain and suffering, and yet I still fall prey to its beckoning.

And so I try once again to elude the lubricious siren’s call. Each day is a new test, and unlike Odysseus, I have no mast on which to bind myself back.