The Mons / 20 March 2002
Finally made good on my resolution and started taking dance lessons up above the laundromat. During the day it’s a ballet studio, floors like a bowling lane, long wooden bars and a wall filled with mirrors, and I’ll crouch down to “pick up a penny” and look close at the tiny fingerprints on the glass and tiny scuffmarks on the floor and that’s where it starts, the coughed-up visions of little prancing pixies, the shadows of innies, the breakable ankles.
If I’m lucky I get Maggie as my partner (hidden behind her bangs, jagged earrings, swollen and hairless calves, elliptical nipples, off-kilter incisors, all clean and straight lines as my boss would say). If I’m truly lucky we’ll be working on what’s called the Boister where the Lady stretches out her working leg, wraps it around the Man’s shoulder, flings her torso back, eyes up to the ceiling (the pinpricks blinded by an endless parade of shallow cleavage), affording the Man a good two or three seconds to look up her billowing skirt.
The Man has never seen the same panties twice, nor even really a consistent theme or pattern. I’ve kept a list in my little notebook: Yellow Starburst, Springtime In Switzerland, Dalmatians Dalmatians Dalmatians, Minimum Security Prison, Queen of Diamonds, Dueling Purple Majesties.
On very rare occasions we attempt the Pole Vault. This immediately follows the Boister and consists of the Man dropping to one knee, letting the Lady’s working leg slide down his back, giving her the leverage she needs to throw herself over the Man’s ducked head, pivoting in the air, and landing behind him. Crucial is the hand placement, with the Man’s left hand placed firmly against the small of the Lady’s back to help with support and propulsion, and the right hands being joined for the duration of the maneuver, i.e., spending most of their time in the general vicinity of the Lady’s … I am left with only unpalatable words like crotch or groin or loin or cunt or pudenda or slit, words obviously designed to be as ugly as possible, to imbed some sort of negativity into the meaning just through the collision of sounds.
I’ll say: mons.
I had it worked out in my head. You should’ve seen it there. The grace, the flow of bodies, like the studio had been filled with water, Maggie’s hair wafting in some undersea current, blue bubbles trailing from our open mouths, etc. She leaps over my head, my hand trailing across her mons and setting something inside her into motion, turning and looking at me in wonder, drifting up toward the ceiling.
Or: It’s fast, too fast to even see, me slipping my fingers under the elastic band of her National Flag Of Black Satin and tearing them from her body with one swift stroke as she passes overhead, then again with the turn-and-look as I dab the sweat from my brow with them. Or: I breathe in their scent and cast them aside disdainfully, like: Why was this flimsy cloth ever allowed to come between us?
When the time actually came I did indeed manage to grab the elastic band, but it caused enough drag to drive her knee into my right eye. My thumb slipping inward and up inside her, while making the whole undertaking worthwhile, didn’t help the trajectory and we plummeted to the floor heavily and awkwardly, the wooden thud drowning out two small, thin cracks: her collarbone snapping and my jaw dislocating.
Maggie shrieked a series of unpalatable words at me until the paramedic sealed off her mouth with a few layers of gauze. They eased me into the ambulance and asked if I was OK but I couldn’t speak so I just gave them a thumbs-up and nodded.