It was the third movement of the symphony and as I took in the music, I looked at her through half closed eyes. She sat on the couch, her face seeming to reflect the mood the mood of the music.
The first and second movements of the symphony draw the listener ever more deeply into the darkness of the human condition. The pain and suffering, our greed and self-indulgence, then the third movement plunges still deeper, drawing us into the horrors, the torture chamber of the tyrant, concentration camps, the casual carelessness of nature’s despoilers, war and its useless destruction. Ever deeper into the dark corners of the subconscious it leads the listener on.
The bass strings sank growling into miasmic gloom. Her enigmatic face, partially shielded by her black hair, melancholy as she absorbed the sombre phrases, sadly reflective and combining with that sadness an odd look of yearning.
I continued to watch her. One would not call her beautiful or pretty. Her looks were something less and something more than that. They were uniquely her own; not to be compared to the standards set by advertisers or television soaps. Her black hair, dark eyes, bronze complexion and her slender physique gave her a mysterious yet sensuous look.
If an artist wanted a model for an enchantress, she would be ideal. I saw her in that moment as a weaver of spells, the creator of love potions. This she conveyed to me sitting in tranquil sadness, letting the music carve her mood.
Then the fourth and final movement burst forth.
From the brass a paean of triumph, followed by the strings taking up the theme in a hymn of praise, then the whole orchestra proclaiming the victory of the human spirit over suffering and adversity. Despite all, we shall prevail!
I looked up at her again and the new, victorious mood had taken over. Seeing me looking at her she gave me that beguiling yet ambiguous smile of hers, displaying white even teeth. Within that smile, there was a hint of danger. It made me think of a huntress as she detects her prey. I returned her smile in no way disconcerted by that which others found slightly disturbing about her. I had, after all, known her since birth, she being my mother.
If, as I have said, she might not be described as beautiful, this had not stopped men seeking her, supplicating for her slightest attention, imploring her to join them in everything from a one night stand to marriage. The story is that on the way back from my father’s funeral she had received her first proposition. She had disallowed them all.
To reverse my metaphor of the huntress, I sometimes think it was a sort of animal grace that attracted men to her. Perhaps like the tigress, beautiful in its lissome movements, yet dangerous, she must have presented a challenge to her male admirers, as those who hunt the real tiger pit themselves against it.
From my youthful observations of the male maneuvers around her, it seemed that she was a sexual rampart to be stormed, and before which all fell in the attempt. Yet still the hopefuls came. Her magic drew them to her, only to be sent away disappointed or even angry at being repulsed.
Some women, noting her resistance to men, decided that her sexual orientation was more in their direction. They too were repulsed from sexual fortress Salome, some departing in tears.
Mother seemed to have the sexual allure of the girl whose name she bore, who was rewarded by Herod with the head of John the Baptist for her “Dance of the Seven Veils.”
In all the years after my father’s death, I never saw any signs of a sexual relationship between mother and a man – or woman for that matter. Men visited our house or were met at social gatherings elsewhere, but none became my stepfather or temporary “uncle.” If there was any sexual relationship, it was kept very concealed from a jealous young boy resentful of any man who might win his beloved mother’s affections.
Why mother kept herself so chaste, I knew no better than those who came in pursuit of her. I can recall no signs that she was unfulfilled. She had no difficulty in talking to me about sex, emphasising its beauty and the bond it built between a man and woman. I gathered from the way she spoke, that the sexual relationship with my father must have been a deeply satisfying one.
So, as I approached adulthood, and having my own sexual needs to wrestle with, I puzzled over why a woman, still sexually in her prime, and clearly desirable, had no lover or lovers.
Perhaps it was a case of the “pot calling the kettle black”? Unusual for our times, at eighteen I was still a virgin. I of course knew that most of my university acquaintances, both male and female, engaged in plenty of promiscuous sex.
I didn’t seem to lack opportunities, and certainly, I had my sexual needs, but one night stands or scuffles on the back seat of a car did not seem to appeal. Perhaps I was greedy and wanted something more? If some people would like to have said to mother, “Get thee to a nunnery,” they might equally have said illegal bahis to me, “Get thee to a monastery.”
The symphony was drawing to its triumphal close. It is odd, but this sort of music can have a sexually teasing effect on me, and now I could feel a tingling in my groin. At the end of the work mother rose and came across to where I was sitting. Leaning over me she said, “I shall go to bed now, darling.”
As so often before, as she came close I detected her aroma. It is not the aroma of perfume or deodorant, but that of woman, sweet and tantalizing. She kissed me and as she did so the top of her dress fell open slightly to give me a vision of unrestrained breasts, firm and pink nippled, like those of a young girl. Her lips on mine were soft and moist, seeming to engulf mine with tenderness.
“Goodnight, Matthew. Sleep well and dream beautiful dreams.” Then she quietly left the room.
Her alchemy worked on me as well. The Sorceress had me under her spell. With my olfactory memory still relishing my mother’s aroma, and the finale of the music exulting in my head, I went to my bed.
In the early stages of sleep, when the guardian of the subconscious begins to relax thoughts and desires repressed during waking hours begin to surface. Among the repressed material are our hidden sexual cravings. On this night as I began to drift off, fantasies of nubile maidens, sweet breasted and willing, floated before me. One feature of these phantom images was that they had no faces until suddenly, and seemingly unbidden, one took on the face of mother.
It had happened before a number of times, and on each occasion, my guardian of the depths startled me awake. I woke now, and as before I began to wonder if I was psychologically sick – a moral idiot to conjure such imagery of my mother.
I fought against sleep for a while fearing I might produce the same fantasy, but after a while drifted off and this time passed into deeper sleep where most times dreams are unremembered upon waking.
Tonight, however, I was not to be granted the mercy of unremembered dreams. Having descended to the depths of sleep, a dream more startling, more vivid than I had ever had before brought me back to wakefulness, sweating and shaking.
Mother was naked under me, smiling and saying gently, “It’s time Matthew.” The tip of my penis approached her opening; then, about to enter her, I woke.
I had a fiercely throbbing erection and had to masturbate to relieve the unbearable tension of it, spraying semen over my belly in a great pool. When I finished a wave of self-loathing swept over me. How could I even begin to consider mother in that light? She had never by hint or gesture ever implied a sexual interest in anyone, and certainly not in me.
“Oh God, what sort of an animal am I to desire even in dreams, my own mother?”
I slept poorly for the rest of that night.
Fortunately, I had my university studies to keep me occupied, and for the next week mother and I saw each other only in passing as we went about our work. No more vivid dreams occurred, but I found myself trying to avoid any close contact with mother. It was as if I sensed danger. Perhaps I might in an unguarded moment say or do something that would reveal the thoughts and feelings I strove to repress.
I began something like a process of self-analysis, seeking to understand why I should be experiencing erotic dreams about mother. That I loved her was certain. I refused to escape into denial of my love. Such rejection would be to denigrate all the love and care she had conferred on me from the time I can first remember.
What I wanted to know was how or why my love had started to assume a sexual content. I understood about infantile sexuality, but according to the therapists, it eventually transferred itself to a safe object. Why was this not happening to me? Why did I not accept the suggestions of my girl acquaintances, and bed them?
The answer continued to evade me.
Mother and I had always been very tactile with each other, touching and hugging. I began avoiding this tactility, and mother noticed and was hurt.
I don’t think I was a surrogate for my dead father. I am sure her holding and touching was out of genuine affection for me, and mine certainly was for her.
One evening she asked, “Is something wrong, Matthew?”
“You seem to be avoiding being near me lately. Have I upset you, or do I smell bad?”
I tried to laugh this off saying, “No, you always smell very nice.”
“I suppose I’ve been a bit immersed in my work lately.”
I could see mother did not believe this, but she pretended to accept it.
It was our first evening together for more than a week after my dream, and we watched a video mother had borrowed from the library. It turned out to be a rather sexually explicit film that had the effect of giving me an erection.
When it was finished mother gave a throaty sort of chuckle and said, “Rather open, don’t you think? I’m off illegal bahis siteleri to bed now, darling. Sleep well and have beautiful dreams.”
She bent to kiss me and it was almost a rerun of the week before. Her fragrance, the sight of her breasts, even her words were similar. I gulped “Goodnight,” and she left.
I found I was shaking with emotion, so I fled hastily to my bed. I thought I had managed to get myself under control regarding my feelings for mother, but I obviously hadn’t.
Happily I had no fantasies during my early sleep, and must have gone into deep slumber fairly quickly. It was then it happened again, but this time the dream did not wake me. This time mother sat astride me saying as she had said in the previous dream, “It’s time, Matthew.”
The dream did not wake me, but mother did. She was shaking me saying, “Wake up, Matthew, your having a bad dream.”
Almost at once, I could feel my semen soaking the sheet under me. I must have ejaculated in my sleep.
Mother sat on the bed asking, “Whatever were you dreaming? You woke me up with your cries. What was it?”
I was still drowsy and partially caught up in my dream, but I managed a lie.
“I don’t know.”
“Well, whatever it was, it involved me,” mother said. “You were calling out my name; “Salome, Salome.”
“Oh, was I? How odd!”
“Do you think you can get back to sleep, or shall I get you something to drink?”
“No, I’ll be all right.”
Mother looked doubtful, but bade me another goodnight, and planting a kiss on my lips, went back to bed.
As soon as I felt it safe to do so, I stripped the bed and tried to remake it with the wet patch of my sperm away from where I lay. I barely slept the rest of the night worrying about the dream and my outcries.
From then on hardly a night passed when I did not dream of having sex with mother. Always she spoke the same words in the dream; “It’s time, Matthew.” I began to get paranoid about my dreaming, and took to fighting to stay awake. Only when extreme tiredness overtook me did I sink into slumber and dream my dream.
Some nights, mother had to wake me, and it seemed that I was always calling out her name, “Salome.” Mercifully, on most nights, I either did not call out, or at least I did not wake mother, yet morning after morning my sheet had a pool of sperm.
My distress concerning the dreams and a lack of proper sleep began to take its toll. From being a very fit sort of person, I began to look and feel unwell. My studies began to suffer and my grades began to drop. I seemed unable to concentrate properly or settle to anything.
At this point, a faculty social event took place. We were supposed to bring along a partner and having been preoccupied with my problem over mother and dreams, I had failed to ask any of the girls I knew. Not wishing to miss the event, I asked mother to accompany me. The outcome was one that set me on yet another train of thought concerning her.
As far as I knew none of my fellow students had ever met mother, and she asked me to introduce her as Salome, and not mention she was my mother. The consequence of this had a disturbing effect on me.
Mother had on a black dress that was slit to halfway up her thighs and also displayed the tops of her breasts to good effect. The dress was in fact at least a generation out of date since the fashion now is to dress as scrappily as possible for all occasions.
Our arrival was a sensation. Every eye, especially the male eyes, swiveled to focus on mother. I felt embarrassed at this attention, but mother seemed hardly to notice it. I thought that it was because she was about the only elegantly dressed person present that she was being looked at. I was soon disabused.
At one point in the evening mother had wandered off and I found myself surrounded by male students, and was bombarded with questions:
“Who the hell is she?”
“Where did you meet that beauty?”
She’s a stunner, you lucky bugger.”
“Has she got any sisters?”
“How did you get a knockout like her in tow?”
“Let me know when you’re finished with her.”
“Do you and she…you know…?
Physically I am reasonably formidable although given to peaceful ways, but I think the look in my eye stopped the last speaker in mid sentence, sensing he was treading on forbidden ground.
The girls present were not quite so friendly, apparently resenting that I had brought along someone who put them all in the shade as far as the boys were concerned.
The effect on me was bewildering. I had a mother who could attract young men half her age – my age – and I found myself getting angry and jealous at the attentions they paid her. They all wanted to fetch her food and drink and dance with her. Mother seemed to be enjoying all this, which I further resented. How dare she enjoy their attentions when I wanted…wanted what?
It was a very mixed up and frustrated Matthew who escorted Salome home that night.
Arriving home mother put her arms round canlı bahis siteleri me and kissed me; “Thank you, darling, it was a lovely evening. I’m off to bed now, sleep well and have beautiful dreams.” Those words again!
I could feel the warmth of her body against mine, alluring – provoking – the sorceress casting her spell – the siren call of unendurable yearning. “Oh God, is she bewitching me?”
That night my dreams of mother were more intense than ever.
For the next fortnight the dream became ever more vivid and I became increasingly debilitated. Then one evening, just after mother and I had finished listening to a piece of music, she said, patting the couch beside her, “Come and sit next to me, Matthew.”
When I had sat she took my hand and looked at me with her penetrating eyes. “Something’s wrong, isn’t it darling? What is it?”
I tried to sidetrack the question and said something about my studies not going too well.
“It’s more than that, isn’t? I can see how pale and restless you’ve become the past weeks…”
I cut in with something about being a bit run down, but it did no good. Mother is too astute to be taken in by that sort of thing.
“It’s those dreams, isn’t, darling. The one’s I’ve had to wake you from. You’ve been getting them every night, haven’t you? Can’t you tell me what they are about?”
I still thought to try to bluff my way out of this, but seeing mother’s intent stare, I decided on the truth.
“Yes, it’s the dreams, but I can’t tell you about them.”
“Why not, darling. Getting them out in the open might help.”
“I can’t tell you, mother.”
“Then I’ll tell you,” she said. “They’re sexual dreams, aren’t they?”
I must have looked startled, because she went on, “Darling, there’s nothing odd about my knowing, I see your sheets when I put them in the washing machine, and I know semen stains when I see them.”
I was mortified, but having been pushed into a corner, I surrendered saying, “Yes, they’re sexual dreams.”
“And they’re about me, aren’t they?”
This really rocked me to the core. How could she know that?
The answer was simple and she, seeing my confusion, gave it to me.
“I know because it’s my name you always call out.”
I felt my face go red with shame as I stammered out, “Yes, they’re about you…I’m so sorry mother…I’ve tried not to…”
She had been questioning me in a very quiet voice, but now in a whisper I heard her say what sounded like, “At last.”
I tried to continue my abject apology but she would not let me.
“Darling, we can’t help our dreams. You might be horrified if you knew some of the things I dream. The real question is, have you been having sexual feelings about me when you’re awake?”
Did she intend to humiliate me completely? To show me what a disgusting wretch I was? I mumbled, “Yes.”
“Thank you for telling me that, my love. You see I knew that as well. I’ve seen your erections at times when you’ve been looking at me. By coming out in the open you’ve made it easier for me.”
“Mother? How is it easier for you?”
I would have thought it would be harder for her, knowing her son had carnal feelings for her.
She had appeared to be her usual calm self, talking quietly, but now there was a glitter of excitement in her eyes as she replied. Being close to her, I could see her pupils dilated and her breathing had become rapid, her breasts rising and falling quickly. Her skin seemed to glow and she was having trouble remaining still.
I had never seen her like this before, my usually controlled mother so agitated.
After a long pause in which we sat staring at each other, she rose and said in a tight voice, “You could ask me how I feel about you. It may surprise you to know, my love, that I have feelings too.”
She loosened the top of her skirt and let it fall to the floor, then proceeded to take her panties off. Her lower half now exposed she sat back on the couch and opened her legs to reveal her genitals.
I seemed to be suspended in space, hypnotised by her crevice nestling in its pubic hair. I felt slightly sick with apprehension and there was a singing noise in my ears. I knew that whatever was said or done now, our lives together would be changed forever. We could never again reestablish the sort of bond that had held us from my birth until now. Something new was being born in our relationship, and as with many people, I always feel a sense of loss for what is departing, and uneasiness about what the new will bring.
She tried to speak, but by now, her breathing had become heavily laboured, and she seemed unable to get the words out. She stared at me for a moment longer as if trying to assess how I was responding to what she had done then she gasped:
If you want me, my love, come into me now.
It was in the open for both of us now. There could be no recriminations except those we leveled at ourselves, and was there any point in that? In perhaps over dramatic terms the thought came to me, “For us, this is the ‘Valley of the Shadow.’” The dark chords of the third movement of the symphony began to resound in my head. “What have we said? And in saying it what have we brought upon ourselves? What lies beyond the ‘Valley’? ‘Green pastures’?”