Adina Pelle


Her Secret Bordello

Her Secret Bordello
Adina Pelle
Deep inside, she craved truth in his words. There was
no doubt he believed them, but they’d be quickly forgotten.
Expired. Inevitably and all too soon.
“How beautiful you are. So beautiful, incredibly beautiful.
I’m afraid of losing myself in your eyes.”
She’d forgotten the feeling.
Mostly, men’s words were empty, rolling over her and
ending as a sad, sick mass in the pit of her stomach.
The day could have been perfect. Instead, it was full of
noise and harsh colors falling from the sky; foreign sunlight
painted the city and limned men’s alien gestures. Piercing and
stabbing—their eyes were bonded on her breast’s peaks and
valleys. She knew of her perfect body beneath layers of satin
and cream—under blush, lipstick, mascara and carefullyarranged
folds of cloth—a childlike body with young, soft
bones that had been dead for years. The bones did not know
how many times they’d been broken. The body had been
violated, but the stain did not touch her soul. She did not see,
did not hear and did not feel anything when her body was
Detached and unknowing—how often was she absent
while jewels of happiness slipped through her fingers?
What was the depth of her despair?
She remembered only certain incursions of flesh; her body
lying next to his. She did not know him and made no effort to
change that situation. Their bodies were close—side-by-side.
Under her skin, secrets were hidden under exhausted, shutdown
senses. On the bed, threadbare sheets were scattered.
From head to toe, her body hurt, but her spirit was hidden and
No one knew. No one suspected.
Nobody, nothing, no.
She created artificial boundaries...she would do anything
but kiss a client on the mouth.
Shhh. Slow down. Speak slowly. I know you like me. I know you
crave my aroma—that of cypress at the edge of a quiet meadow with
scented hair scattered by the wind and a body made of sand twisting
and conforming to yours.
The flesh remembers its long-lost innocence.
Don’t say anything.
Bodies like undulating snakes. Reptilian. Cold words—
language assembled from wet words as she unfolded beneath
him. A predictable gush of secondhand passion and sexual
instinct’s fleeting moment of glory and reward.
Entwined hands, feet and whispers…everything but kisses
on the mouth. A sudden, fraudulent flowering.
Above: nothing but a man’s hairy, husky, meaningless
body. Below: nothing but an acid taste on her tongue.
Why am I with this man?
To find peace, all questions must be suspended.
Afterward came a moment of quiet, leaky freedom. With
a cigarette, she tranquilized disgust and painted over his taste
with smoke and enjoyed the embrace of nicotine’s small delirium.
Predictable. Each time, no different. Nearly naked, her
body was dead. They had only empty names; no bodies or
souls. No collective spirits. No synergy. No compassion. No
Only far-away sensations were left over from the
barbarism of their animal coupling. Stolen pieces of
remembered men were collected like trophies.
Hotel beds, fumbling illusions of love, barroom
battlefields and sad, uncaring sex—everything was always the
same. She raised her hands as if warding off evil.
Barely breathing, she was a soulless, mechanical doll.
Instead of arms she had wings, but not for flying. Her broken
wings were used for crawling around the room over cheap
sheets and discarded clothing.
Trapped, she looked around with eyes filled with sadness.
Nothing looked back. To God, she was invisible. Less than
invisible. He was filled with love for ants and moths, but had
nothing for her.
Sometimes she dreamed of the final, dying spasm of her
anonymous, humiliated body followed by an eternal sleep.
But, today’s transaction must be consummated.
The man pulled on his clothes and left. The motel door
closed with a solid finality. After a sponge bath, she arranged
jars, tubes and vials of makeup on the bathroom sink. After a
time, her wings changed back into hands and she reapplied her
pretty mask.

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