How To Tell Whether You're Fucking or Making Love

          Where’s the bed?
          Is it by the window?
          Are you facing it? Lying on your left side, staring through the slight openings of the blinds... Are your eyes concentrating on a dim, flickering street light in the distance? If so, it must still be early in the morning. Around 4 or so.

          Lie still. Can you feel him exhaling against your neck? It should be reminiscent of the steamy heat from a shower: the moisture from the sweat, his body heat, the warmth of his breath, and then the moment of cool that comes in when it dissipates... At this point, his arms should be wrapped around your small torso, holding you just as tightly as he did just before he had fallen asleep. Can you feel his firm chest press into your shoulder blades as he breathes those long breaths? Pace your breathing pattern with his now. You can relax. You can go to sleep. Trust me. 

          He got off so good that he could sleep through the earthquake that will finally split California away from the rest of the United States, and where are you? You’re in his bed...you’re in his arms, you’re probably in his dreams, but somehow it’s never enough for you. Your body is there, there with him, but your mind is somewhere else. Somewhere lost, calling out into the void that you fear no one will be able to fill. You’re thinking about when he’s going to roll over and forget about you. It’s your own self worth that’s being questioned, and whether or not he is the man you think he is, whether or not he leaves you like the others had, he’s not the problem. 

          Did you close your eyes yet?

          You take notice of the threshold of his bedroom door, the pull up bar he’s decided to re­purpose as a towel rack, the silent alarm clock, resting on top of the nightstand, with the time set fifteen minutes in advance, its red numbers glaring back at your tired eyes, reminding you of the sleep that you could have had. Your mind berates you with the things, and the life that you could have had, if you let one of your exes continue to cheat on you, if you had let the other fuck you in the back of his mother’s car without a condom, if you let the other see you another day after he had wrapped his thick, ketchup smelling fingers around your long, smooth neck and squeezed as tightly as he could... yet, here in this man’s bed is what’s frightening you right now? You can relax. You can go to sleep. Trust me.

          You can feel that can’t you? You’re squeezing your legs a little tighter. The urges you’re afraid to feel, the love you’re afraid to have...it happens without your consent, and he knows how to ease the doubt for you. He ows.ou feel warm right? 

          Remember what he did? Remember how he did it? 

          He came in the room, shirtless, belt buckle jingling as he stopped by the door. You pretended to be asleep, listening closely to his movements, trying your hardest to remain still. Under the comforter, a loose t­shirt and boyshorts, you burned under the anxiety of this finally happening. Shuffling, the belt jingling, then a soft drop. A step, then another, then another, then nothing. Before you could turn, you could feel his palm in the bed, pressing the mattress down. You could feel the comforter lift, the chilly air rushing in, his body following suit. You squeezed your eyes shut, you held your breath, you felt his cold hand sliding down the valley of yourwaist, up the mountain of your hip, catching your panties with his thumb, and sweeping them away as his hand continued down the mountainside. You gasped, and the moment you did so, he knew exactly what he was going to do to you.

          It didn’t take long until he covered your neck in warm, lingering kisses. Your skin lit up, becoming the most sensitive it’s ever been. His touch was unbearable. You couldn’t handle it because you wanted it to be too good to be true. You wanted everything to reflect what you’ve experience before. You wanted it to all go wrong, but you moan. You wriggle, he pulls you onto your back, sliding his kneecap between your thighs, prying them apart. Your breaths shutter. He takes your shirt over your head, and then there you were, under the comforter, nothing else but the skin on your bodies and the tension of the anticipation weighing on your brow, moistening your inner thighs, stiffening his penis. He presses his lips on yours. He can taste your fear. He can feel you tremble. And right before he pushes himself into you, he grabs the back of your neck, pulls you closer and leaves words that you’ve heard before in you ear.

          “I’m not going to hurt you.” 

          Did you believe him? As he started from a slow churn, to a forceful pounding, as you cried out his name, did you believe him? You held onto him dearly. You wanted the climax to be the only reason you let go. You told yourself not to fall in love, but you did. You loved him, and as he stroked you deeply, he loved you. As he lay asleep beside you, he still loves you. But you’ll never believe it will you? You’ll never believe me when I say, you can relax now. You can go to sleep. Trust me...trust me please. 

 

 

 

        You know what? I saw it coming. 

        I saw your insecurities. I saw his insecurities. I saw the way they exploded when you disagreed. And I saw you both crumbling under the pressure of loving one another and shielding yourselves from one another. You needed him to prove to you every day that he loved you. He needed you to prove to him every day that he could trust you. Two forces pounding into one another only feels good when it’s consensual sex. When it’s your prides, your egos, your fears...it was only a matter of time when one gave out. He just so happened to be the first, giving you the proof that you oh­so­desperately needed...that you were always, and will always be, the one who loved more, the one who loved the longest, the one that always got hurt.

 

 

 

          Where’s the bed?
          Is it by the window?
          There’s a lone window that gives you the amazing view of a Chicago alleyway. There’s not much to see at any time of the day, but you didn’t come there for that. Come to think of it, you’re not sure why you came there in the first place.

          There’s another man in the bed, in the hotel room he booked the night before. He’s not at all who you saw yourself being with, and you thought that you were okay with that. You didn’t know what you wanted anymore. You just decided that you needed another body again. A hopeless romantic, always seeking out the wounded, loving those who are not loved by anyone else and refuse to love themselves.

          Under the comforter, you feel a hand searching you out, scooping your waist and pulling you closer. His nose pushes into your hair, taking in its scent before leaving a kiss. His hand trails down your body, you rest your hand on his chest as he leans in, his nose faintly touching yours, lips hovering closely. He kisses you, and you think you feel something for a moment. Wrap your hands around his head. Kiss him back. Find what you think your feeling.

         He gets in between you, and you cannot deny, what he’s doing is working. He’s not holding back. And slowly, your mind drifts. And you wonder exactly how long it will be until he came. So you did what you knew how to do: made him come. 

         You found yourself in his bed eventually. It’s cold, isn’t it? There’s no comforter. There’s no pillows. There’s a man with his back to you in the bed, snoring loudly... 

         Don’t close your eyes. 

         You take notice of his nightstand. Prescription bottles... wrappers from those $2 cigars used for blunts. Ashes and whatever was left over from the one you smoked with him. On the floor, your clothes, his clothes, the condom filled with milky semen. This man that you barely knew, gave you a chance to learn a great deal about yourself. And where you were at the moment, you weren’t sure how to feel. 

         The sex was quick. It was simple. He pulled your skirt and thong down, mounted you and stroked like he had one speed, one agenda. As he kissed you, he expressed how much he wanted to make you feel good. He warned you before you got there that he had something in store for you. And he did. He held you tightly, very tightly. You called out his name, dug your fingernails into his back. He pounded harder until he announced his ejaculation, came and then rolled off of you. You turned over. Silence...

          Hours later, he takes you out to a movie. He was a gentlemen, opening your door when you approached his car, shutting it for you as well. After the movie, he grabs your hand as you both walk down the street back to his car. You both search around for a place to eat, deciding on something and the parked. He sat on his car as you put quarters into the meter. When you turn around, he pulls you by your waist. 

          You wrap your arms over his shoulder, looked into his eyes before you kissed him. And for a moment, you felt something before it quickly went away. You weren’t in love with him. You were in love with dating. You guys held hands again, ate dinner. Went to a bar and had sex again in his car before he took you back home. 

          The texts messages and dates were nice, but like before, you wanted him to prove something to you. And after many stand­ups, disappearances and ignored phone calls, what it winded up being was that your self­worth and confidence mattered. That how you wanted to be treated mattered. That love mattered. Deep down, with this guy, you knew that you were just fucking. And with this guy, it helped you realize when you were making love. And that mattered. 

 

 

 

          Where’s the bed?
          Is it by the window?
          Are you facing it? Do you find yourself staring out, longing for someone to share yourself with now that you’re alone?

          Do you know how to tell whether you’re fucking or making love? Repeat the names of the men on your mind. If you had no other choice, which one would you rather tell that you missed them? Which one gave you butterflies? Which one made you genuinely smile? Which one valued you more? Which one made you feel like you’d never love anyone else ever again? Which one made you feel like “this was it”? If one of them were to walk away, which one would hurt you the most?

          So... how do you tell if you’re fucking or making love? They’re distinctly different, both offering you different feelings and revelations. If you can’t tell at all...you’re just fucking. All I can say is, wherever and whenever it happens, for the very first time...you’ll know. And it doesn’t guarantee that you’ll end up staying together, but you’ll almost never forget how they made you feel. 

 

When You Knew

Featured Artist - April 2016: Lindsey Wright