When I was 20 I saw sex in everything. I had just been made love to for the first time and despite the ineptitude of the coupling and ultimate dissatisfaction of the whole event, it opened up a whole new world to me. Freud made perfect sense. Walking down the city streets I was astonished by the eroticism of the thrusting skyscrapers and the overt sexuality of the trains spearing through tunnels and smokers luxuriously dragging on cigarettes. And I was belwildered why everyone else wasn't as dumbstruck by this unashamed concrete carnality as I was. From my bedroom window I could see the city skyline with the long needle of Centerpoint rearing up from the middle, a large cantilevered penis.
It soon became clear that my first sexual encounter had set the pattern with that boy and we were never to achieve mutual fulfilment. So I set out to seduce my first older man - he was 24. On our first night together, awkwardly entagled on the back seat of his stationwagon, I begged him to teach me how to mine the carnal depths of my body and coax me to the ultimate release I had never experienced. But his fulsome erection deflated at my words like a pricked balloon, never to arise in my presence again.
After that I tried many types of men and many types of sex: oral sex, sex standing up, sex from behind, sex on top, sex on beaches, in swimming pools, in nightclub toilets - in fact, surprisingly little sex on beds. But I couldn't achieve satisfaction.
The buildings, trains and cigarette-smokers mocked me. Centerpoint mocked me, thrusting with insouciant tumescene into the clouds.
I searched for clues to my state from my childhood. Eventually I remembered asking my third grade teacher what sex was. She told me it was when daddy put his penis into mummy's vagina and semen came out. I didn't know what penis was, or vagina, but I recognised semen. And for years pondered the strange events that somehow linked my parents to a bunch of sailors.
I had sex with a sailor. It was no good.
Then I stopped having sex altogether. Occaionally I would try masterbation. Candles burning, soft music playing in the bedroom and a magazine "how-to" guide insecurely propped against my parted kness. I would delve and rub for hours, but I just grew sore and sleepy and started flicking through the magazine, and eventually gave up on that as well.
I knew I could it, though, because sometimes in the deepest, darkest part of the night I would have dreams I could never remember in the morning and a tremendous spasming in my body would wake me up, and when I reached between my legs I would be wet - but by then it would all be over.
He was not the sort of man I imagined, the many times I tried to imagine that man I still believed would one day show me how to tap my well of sexual pleasure. I had always been attracted to the overtly seductive, men who ignalled their prowess with their confident gestures and suggestive small-talk. Taken in by the advertising. He had no small-talk, made no guestures. Eventually it was his stillness I noticed, the impression he gave of complete self-containment. And when the other guests at my flatmates' dinner party had left, I knew he would stay behind and follow me up to my room. And he did.
He hardly talked. He guided me with his fingertips, showing me how he wanted my limbs arranged on the bed. On my back, on my belly, my legs closed or apart, arms reaching above my head or resting by my side. And him sitting fully-clothed and crosslegged, watching me, just watching. Eyes closed, I let myself be choreographed.
His gaze seemed to fall on me like a weight. Without seeing him I could feel where his eyes were resting. Now on my breasts, my ass, the small of my back, my throat, my mouth. Each place burned as his stare touched it. Hipbones, ankles, thighs, between my thighs; he dissected me. And there was no impatience, no urgency, just peace and languor and the burning lust that heated my blood. And then he began to caress me. Slowly, leisurely. Like a blind man feeling a woman for the very first time, he ran his hands over every part of me. He felt the joints in my toes, the calluses on my heels, rubbed my ankles and traced the muscles in my calves, massaged my thighs, my ass, ran his fingertips up my spine, pressed my shoulder blade, explored the bumps of my skull, his big hands spooning through my hair. He turned me over and touched my cheekbones, ran a fingernail across my lips, took my breasts into his hands, stroked my belly.
Wherever his eyes had rested, his hands lingered. And then he opened my legs and felt very softly between them, parting the soft lips of the vulva, plundering the source of the moisture. And then one forefinger touched my clitoris and paused on it, teased it, and I moved my legs even wider apart and groaned, and almost wished he would stop because the sensations spiralling out from the tender, center point were nearly painful in their intensity. But he kept massaging and rubbing, the circluar motion soft but insistent. And then it was like the deepest, darkest times the spasming was pure and powerful and my whole body seemed to clench and release itself over and over again as he drove his fingers deeply into me and I orgasmed from his hand, spreadeagled on the bed.
I had many men after him, and much satisfaction, as long as they were slow and sure, less passionate then patient. But I always think of him with affection as my first, perfect lover.