Monday, May 5, 2014

Always Looking excerpt by Mykola Dementiuk

Always Looking by Mykola Dementiuk begins, "I started going out early with girls and guys, not for sex because at that age, who the hell knew what sex was?"

With those words, Danny's coming-of-age begins. From the gloomy, stifling hallways of high school in the 1960's to the vast expanse of 1970's New York, young Danny explores the complexities of love and lust in the arms of Luba, a girl he believes himself in love with, and then in the company of various men, from whom he learns his true nature.

Raised by a poor, single mother whose upcoming marriage to a second husband threatens Danny's shaky world, Danny finds that accepting -- and ultimately embracing -- the unpredictability and promise of his future means letting go of the past and taking the leap of faith he knows he needs in his journey to maturity.

Always Looking
JMS Books (January 13, 2013)


Chapter 6

Months passed into years and faded behind me. High school had become an ugly memory, but still I kept prowling the streets, always looking, always alert, and always ready. Luba’s closeness soon faded into jobs and other interests, but I still saw her every now and then. We’d make out in the East River Parkgetting a hand-job or a finger-fuck, and go back to our little lives before we’d meet again. I’d have a job for a little while or not have a job at all. I’d be living at home or not even be there at all; everything meant the same to me. All I did on a constant basis was just walk, which I did every day. My favorite place, amongst many, was Central Park, that lush and immense parkland of strollers, walkers and chronic masturbators, of which I now was one.

Central Park in the mornings is a desolate area peopled by only a few walkers making their way to work; it is not a time for idle strolling unless you have other things in mind, which I certainly did…

It was around 70th Street or so, as I passed a few people walking their dogs near the baseball fields, when I saw him: a seated man, his legs stretched before him, clutching his crotch, outlining the bulky penis within. I turned red but strolled nearer yet somewhat slower than before, looking at what the man was doing, rubbing himself. Our eyes met, and he winked at me, still holding onto his crotch. What could I do? I winked back at him, slightly rubbing my own crotch. I approached his bench and looked at him again. I blushed.

“You have another cigarette?” I quietly asked, looking down at his shirt pocket and the pack sticking out but really looking down at his bulky crotch.

He nodded. “I do,” he answered, “but what do I get in return?” And all the while he kept rubbing the large bulge in his pants as my mouth hung open.

At another time and place I would have told him, “Fuck you, asshole!” and stalked out of there, but instead I fell to his bench and leered at him.

“This…” I answered, looking around but grabbing his crotch. “Can I have one, please?”
From where did I get the audacity to do that? What bold nerves did I have or was I just a plain horny hard-up faggot?

It was a big meaty muscle I felt, certain that he was as erect as could be, but under my hand, it only grew bigger and larger. I was very impressed by the size of his stiffening prick. He slowly reached in his pocket and pulled out a pack of Viceroy cigarettes, drawing one out.

“You want it in your mouth, don’t you, baby?” He straightened his leg. “You want to kiss and suck it…?”

If he hadn’t said what he did at that moment, I might have gone and lost myself in the emotions I was feeling and followed them to the natural course of events as they were leading me to do something to him. But his words “You want it in your mouth…” jarred me to wakeful remembrance, and the reality of what I was doing couldn’t be denied. I was feeling a hard-up man, like the man in the subway restroom many years ago. I ejaculated, contorting on the bench, lost in the feelings of peace and satisfaction. I sat bolt upright, letting go of his covered penis.

“What the fuck?” he muttered as I ran deeper into the park.
Oh no, why was it happening again?

Chapter 7

Down the paths I fled, gagging and belching, sweat pouring over me. It was certain I was a dirty faggot—no question about that. Again I spat out and belched again. Oh Christ, what is wrong with me? But I did ask him for a cigarette. That was all. I was reaching for a cigarette, I imagined, and the dirty faggot tricked me. You have to watch it in the park; the faggots are everywhere.  I collapsed onto a bench and looked out on the still waters of the Central Park Lake. It was early morning, and the rowboats where still docked at the boathouse. A few people walked along in the distance. Nearby a fancily made-up woman who was smoking a cigarette, her hair high on her head, her bosom puffed out, clad in white trousers and high-heels, walked a little dog that seemed it didn’t want to go anywhere.

“Fifi, what is wrong with you?” she squealed at the puppy, “Mommy doesn’t have all day, you know.”

I instantly bent down to the little dog.

“Hey, puppy,” I said waving my fingers at him.

“Woof, woof!” it squeaked, darting away and getting tangled in the woman’s legs.

She spun around, shaking the dog and chain, tossing her half-smoked cigarette away.

“Fifi, stop that!”

“Woof, woof!”

She got a hold of the dog, and I sat smiling, looking at the woman also bending down to her puppy.

“How old is the little puppy?” I asked, still twirling my fingers at the dog.

The woman looked at me and reached for another cigarette.  “Next week she will be one year,” she said, stooping down and picking up Fifi in her arms. She hugged the little puppy, which responded by trying to lick her face. “Eww!” The woman shrieked and quickly bent down, setting the dog back on the ground. “Bad dog, Fifi. Bad, bad dog!” She shook her head and lit the cigarette. I bit my lips.

“You have another one?”

She looked at me but held out the open pack to me.  Salem; there were four or five remaining. I took one, as she held out the matches to me.

“You live around here?” she asked.

I shook my head, blowing out the smoke.

“No, ma’am, I live downtown.” The menthol smoke was a bit repulsive, but I didn’t let on.

“Hmm, downtown, what’s that? The Lower East Side?”

I nodded.

“Yes, ma’am, I was just out walking, you know?” and winked at her.

She snorted and shook her head.

“Long walk,” she said, and picked up her little puppy and started back on the walkway.

“Don’t go,” I feebly muttered, but she walked quickly without turning back to look at me and disappeared from sight on the trail. I sat smoking her menthol cigarette. Salem, I read the name and flung the half-smoked butt into the Lake.

Chapter 8

It was early afternoon when I walked near the Central Park Zoo, a carousel spinning round as merry thumping music played. When I was a kid a few times my parents had taken me for a ride on one of the carousel ponies—I think that green one?  No, that yellow one? Oh, what the hell, I can’t remember. I chuckled and sat down to watch the kids going round and round.

A few people sat on the benches, happily looking after their kids then getting up and going to them as the ride ended. At the far end of the benches sat a man, seemingly reading a paperback, but all the while glancing up at the kids or whoever passed him by. I know that look, I thought, turning very red: a flaming faggot, that was what he was. I sat a while, trying to adjust the hard-on in my pants, then got up and started walking in his direction.

Oh no, what am I doing? It had been a few hours since I last tried it, and here I am again, trying to entice a man. I’m nothing but a filthy faggot, but this had been going on for years—in the parks, in the restrooms, doing it, but then fleeing as if nothing happened. I wanted to shake my head, but I just stared at him as I drew nearer.

He was an older man than the other was, and it seemed that he would read a few sentences, all the while looking up as if he was awaiting someone. I neared him, turning to my left to take a seat on his bench. The man sat up, uncrossing his legs and turning to his side. I sat down. He nodded, and I nodded back. It didn’t seem as if he had been smoking; I made no mention of it.

“Nice day,” he said.

I nodded.

“Sure is, too nice to be indoors.”

This time he nodded.

“You from around here?” he asked.

I knew what to say. I wasn’t going to admit anything, not like with the woman and her stupid dog.

“Near here, but not very far way, either.”

He looked at me.

“Nice,” he said, nodding his head. “I like to meet boys from this area. What street do you live on?”

I instantly thought about Haaren HS on 59th Street and knew there were some brownstones on the next block.

“60th and 10th,” I lied, “You?”

He winked and nodded.

“Also near here, 75th and Madison.”

I smirked.

“We’re practically neighbors.”

He giggled.

“Right you are, neighbors…”

He sat holding his book, thinking and looking at me.

“What you reading?” I asked, gesturing to his book, “Anything interesting?”

He looked at the cover and shrugged, holding out the book to me.  “It’s okay, but not as good as the old movie, you ever see it?”

I got up, took a few steps closer, and joined him on the bench, taking the book from him. The Big Sleep by Raymond Chandler. “Kidnapping, pornography, seduction,” read the back cover.

“Yeah, that’s a movie, too,” I said, handing back his book.

“But I’ve never seen it,” I winked. “But I sure do like that bit about pornography, you know what I mean?”

He looked at me and then glanced at his book.

“You know, next week The Big Sleep will be playing up at the Paris Cinema, that movie house on 59th Street that shows old films. You ever been there?”

I shook my head.

“No, never have.”

“Oh, but you should see it. It’s a classic with Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall. You should go,” he looked at me as if thinking of something. “Here, read the book,” he said, handing over the Chandler novel. “Perhaps if we live so close to each other we can meet and go to the Paris Theater together. It’s on 59th Street off 5th Avenue. You ever been there?”

Again I shook my head and watched him closely.

“Perhaps.” I shrugged. “Next week you say?” He nodded. “Okay, I’ll meet you there.”

He brightened.  “Oh, goodie, it will be like our first date.” He clutched my hand, giving it a nice gentle squeeze. “I’m so happy. By the way, what’s your name? I’m Phillip.”

I snorted, frowning and shaking my head.  “Danny,” I told him, narrowing my eyes. “But it’s not our date. I’m not a queer. Did you think I was a queer?”

He let go of me. “You aren’t? I was sure you were one, but you certainly look like one.”

I was angry.

“You’re crazy and sick,” I said, waving my arm at him and standing up. “Forget I gave you my name. You’re a perv, goodbye.”

“I’m dreadfully sorry,” he pleaded, reaching out for me. “I didn’t know it was like your first time, forgive me. Forget I ever mentioned queers. Very sorry, let’s start all over, okay?”

I stood a moment, looking at him, and dropped to the bench again.

“You have a cigarette?” I angrily asked.

He shook his head.

“Oh, no, those things are dreadful,” he said, and winked.  “I’d rather be sucking something else, if you know what I mean?”

I smirked and shook my head.  “Yeah, I do, you’re queer.”

He nodded. “Yes but you and I are like two peas in a pod. Apart, we’re nothing, but together, we grow into a blooming garden. All we need is a little tenderness and love. Don’t you think so, sweetie?”

And he blinked at me and again tried reaching for my hand. In the near distance the carousel started up again, but this time not many people were on it, just a few frightened little kids with their caregivers standing close by them and waving them on. I did nothing as his hand moved over mine and settled on my crotch, giving me a firm squeeze. By then I had already melted from his closeness, responding more to what was going to occur in the movie house as we watched the old film he was planning to see. I did not care that he gripped my dick and balls, ready for anything, when I felt it: that sudden and quick gyrating spasm in the pit of my belly and was soon rushing frantically upwards. I ejaculated, clamping my eyes shut, my body shaking and shivering with pleasure. I looked about me; he was staring right at me with his hand on my covered but quickly dwindling penis.  How could this be happening, I wondered, and right out in the open? I pushed his hand off and jumped up.

“Gotta go,” I said, holding out his book.

“Go where?” he asked, not taking the book. “Read it. We have a date next week at the Paris, Wednesday at noon time.  Now don’t forget,” he called after me.

But I had hurried away on the trail, half-running, half-walking, and tapping his book on my leg, fleeing from the park.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

As usual, a good evocation of time and place and of the mind of a young man searching for what he only suspects is what he wants.

Joe DeMarco