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POETRYETC  2002

POETRYETC 2002

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Subject:

What's to mention? - 1 of 1 - as Biography # 6 / Lawrence Upton

From:

Lawrence Upton <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Poetryetc provides a venue for a dialogue relating to poetry and poetics <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Wed, 13 Feb 2002 00:08:45 -0000

Content-Type:

text/plain

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But I can't really say much about *her. I only met the woman a couple of
times.

I've spent much more time talking about her with her in absentia, as they
say, than I ever did in her company.

The first time?... was in some pub somewhere. I wasn't even introduced; but
I certainly noticed her. She was drop dead gorgeous. Her husband was there;
but I hardly took any notice of him. Well!

It might make more sense if I remembered *why we were there.

I was *leching after this woman. You know what I'm like. It stops everything
else.

Afterwards, I got the idea that she and Mike were fucking. My wife said
that. She didn't use that word; she hates it. I think she said something
like: Of course, they are lovers. And I was astonished. I denied it and told
her she was silly. I don't know why, because women do notice things like
that; and I knew *that. Anyway, she told me that I should have watched them
more closely. She watches everyone.

I didn't get another chance; but I kept thinking back over that night, the
hour or so of it when they were both in my sight; and it did seem to me that
there was something going on, which might explain why she was taking no
notice of *me...

That *was meant to be a joke.

I'm not sure; it may just have been the suggestion of my wife's. It was very
well done if they *were... you know.

No, that's wrong. They were. I know they were. I drink too much. I know what
was happening because I've talked to Mike about it so much. Bloody social
worker and therapist, I am. I mean, they did do it very well. From my point
of view, they didn't actually show anything; and possibly from his, the
husband's.

She was lovely! Tastefully dressed. Lovely long hair. And her voice! Made me
stiff to listen to it. And there's Mike chucking down pints and behaving
just the way he always did, as if nothing's going on. Then I'm told a good
bit of what he was saying was double whatsit for sure, if only you know what
was significant to them, and why. Which, of course, you couldn't.

I didn't get much more from the wife. She'd spotted it, but she didn't
approve. They're all a bit like that where she comes from. I think that I
decided eventually *not to believe it. Finally. I suppose it was easier. If
I believed it, I had to investigate it, didn't I? And, also, what would have
hurt, and I know this, it did hurt, was to acknowledge that he hadn't told
me.

If I was him and I had this gorgeous woman making love to me, I'd have said
something straight away. He said nothing to me. And, later, when I asked him
straight out: Why?! he answered immediately, looked me in the eye and said:
Because you're unreliable.

That upset me. But he explained, though it still hurt, that he didn't doubt
my good intentions, but what would have happened if we'd all met up together
and I'd known? His theory was that I'd have blown it wide open Whoosh! Bang!
Crrr! and he's probably right. I'd have been so impressed with his style,
I'd have wanted to discuss it with the one he was... he was... cuckolding.
Or I'd have been double clever, I mean double stupid, and *alluded to it, to
show I could be clever too; and stuffed it up.

I didn't see so much of him after that. It hurt a lot, as I say, and I
didn't forgive him.

We were still together, as mates, but it wasn't the same; and he wasn't
always free. Too busy putting his cock in this woman, I suppose.

Pretty soon it was just postcards on holiday, if we remembered, and
Christmas cards. That was if he remembered. I noticed that ours were always
signed by Mike, for both of them, but in his hand-writing. Now Christmas
cards were never his thing; so I think he must have been including us to
make a point. She didn't like me at all. Her breasts! God!

See? I remember still. But I'm ahead of myself, because that was later.

All I knew, at first, was that he had moved again; and when this Christmas
card thing started, then I guessed it must be that they'd set up home
together. Actually, he'd moved in. Pushed the other bloke out and moved in.

We were very close, you know. Always were. I'm noisy, he's clever. No,
that's about it. I liked him an awful lot, but I thought too he was a bit
sad. I mean when we were young, all we could think about, so we *said, was
getting a woman and having sex. Well, that's all I could think of anyway.
He, though, he would talk about everything but. Sex for him seemed to be
something to make a joke of; and he could be very funny in those days. Now,
me, I was going out with women, you know, and getting a grope, getting quite
a way, actually; but not, you know. This is in our teens; and there was a
point, whenever it was, that I was always talking very loudly about this
woman and that woman and going to dances, and all that; but, actually,
technically, well, I was still a virgin.; and he turns up in the pub with
this woman, quite a sweet thing she was, that quite obviously he'd been
having it off with, for some time.

I asked him why he hadn't mentioned it, and he said: What's to mention? I
remember that so well. What's to mention. And, I'll tell this too, Why
hadn't he shown her around before? Boring, he said, Boring; and then he
changed the subject, as if to show just how boring he thought she was. And
when she came back from powdering her nose, he went on talking about - I
don't know what - hydraulics or something. One of his subjects. Whatever it
was he'd been talking about, he continued, though she was there and clearly
not knowledgeable on that subject. Nor was I.

I could see she was pissed off, but I didn't say anything. I gave her the
money to get a round in and told him off good and proper, I can tell you.
And he said, I can't swear this is exactly it, but something like it: It's
her own fucking fault. She won't let go. She had to come and talk with us. I
told her she wouldn't like it.

That was quite a blow to me, I can tell you, to find my best mate who I felt
superior to, and he turns up with a woman, cos he didn't seem to know what
his cock *was, he hadn't seemed to, and he was giving someone I'd never
known existed a regular screwing; and not only that but had got it down so
routine he found her boring.

Well, as I was saying, we drifted apart. Whether it was his admission that
he didn't trust me or the fact that he had finally found someone he wanted
to live with, I don't know. Bit of both, I should think. *And *her attitude
to me.

You see, I wasn't prepared just to let a friendship like that go and I
began, first, writing and then ringing him up, till eventually we went out
for a drink.

It was good. It was like it had been. Towards the end of the evening, we
hadn't had *that much, I said how much I'd like to see where he lived. Boy
oh boy, did he resist that, but I kept pushing and eventually we made a
motorcade, me following him, to his house. She wasn't visible. He said she
was out with girlfriends - if you believe that - and so he made the coffee.
It was very good. The real thing: grinder, steam whatsit. This is years
before it became fashionable. But he kept me in the kitchen, because of my
smoke, he said, with the outside door open. How he had used to smoke! And
aggressive with it.

We did a couple of cups - I wanted to wake myself up before driving back -
and in walks Madam. You know what the first thing she says to me? Her old
man's best mate who she hasn't seen for years? Oh, you're smoking. That's
what she said. Well, screw you, darlin'; that's what I thought. But she must
get washed and goes out into the rest of the house, the house I came to see
and haven't seen.

He said nothing and I was too surprised to speak. Then she's back. Silly
little girl voice: Could I have a cup of tea, darling? And he melts for it.
And a hottie? (Yes, a hottie.) No, I'm going straight to bed. Yes. I'm
tired.

Fuck me!

He fell for it, too, as I say. Shooed me out real quick. But what I haven't
said is the change in her. He was just the same as far as I could tell. But
she was thin. High heels, like a whore's. Gaudy makeup. All that gorgeous
hair clipped off; and, in total, she was about as attractive as a broken
hairbrush that's been dipped in an unflushed toilet. Excuse my language.

Never saw her again, though we shared a few freezing words when I phoned up.
I don't think she let him use the phone.

Next thing I know they've broken up. Damn good job, I say. Still don't see
much of him though.

More than we did; but less than I'd like.

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