about what he was doing at that moment and whom he was talking to. I would stay in my bed, plunged into the darkness produced by the raggedy curtain hanging up that moved with the motion of the fan and its rusty metallic sound in the room.
I asked my mother to iron my robe so that I could put it on and sit in a corner of the house pretending to be busy doing something with my hands, some knitting, or a doll, or a sketchpad, while mind, body, and soul I was with him. When he looked at me or spoke to me, I nearly expired from panic and fear, sure that I would die of happiness if he touched me or spoke to me. My mother was desperate for him to order her to serve him in any way. His simmering presence enslaved her and she followed him everywhere and offered him her services in everything, divining his desires to offer him what he needed before he asked.
One day, no one was home. My mother had gone to work in the town. He had gone out with his father to be introduced to his friends. I knew this was a chance to go into his room. I went in and locked the door behind me. Very gently and cautiously I opened his suitcase. I saw his clothes, pressed and neatly arranged as expected of a university student. A black and white photograph of him was in an upper pocket. I took it out, my hands quivering. I held it up to my eyes. I wanted to feel his lips and face with my fingers. I placed my lips over his in the photograph and shut my eyes. I put my hand to my chest and the two small cherries on my breasts stood erect, causing me pain.
I tried again more than once. I took off my clothes, first my robe, then my knickers. I picked up his mirror, which was placed carefully among his things. I brushed it with my hand and saw my face in it. I took out his shirt and put it over my body as though I was feeling the heat of his skin. I put on his shoes and felt the places where his fingers had been. I wanted to possess him through his clothes. I went through his stuff, his dirty underwear. Afterwards, I took all his things out of the suitcase and put them on the floor. I took off the shirt and shoes and lay down naked in the suitcase.
Not long passed with me like that when suddenly I heard the
22 BANIPAL 53 – SUMMER 2015
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