Inspired Pleasure

Diary of a Dancer

    Sat 9 Apr 77
    Mason & Avril moving out. I wash and de-flea dogs – take 

Them for a long run. Check Rolfe books out of library to incorporate
into Father Vespula’s act. Supposed to see Black Sunday w/Keith
tonight. I like Robt Shaw and there’s nothing else around.
Had a chance to sell Bruce’s stereo for $100 so jumped
at it.

    Sun 10 Apr
    Terrifying evening with Keith. We were at Gallagher’s

(ran into Shoulders with Garrett & Opal.) Keith invited me to go
to NJ conference with him! I am not willing to step from “dating”
to “involved”. I have to face ugly truth I’m dating him to make myself
feel better about an abusive ex-boyfriend who refuses to become an
ex (because I keep inviting him back in.) Behind each mask is another
mask. Shoulders said I can store “anything” in his basement if I want to
take off for the summer (that would be nice.) Read Voices in an
Empty Room by Phil Lorraine – just TERRIBLE. Every bad book sets
me back another month. Received copy of Plumly Alumni Directory in
Reed dies in a climbing accident! He wasn’t wearing climbing
shoes! He was always purposely careless. Challenging God I think.
But it is very sad. Toss Sheffield “my bloodmate” is unmarried! Woo hoo!
Wrote a poem about it.
Met an attaché of the Trinidad-Tobago embassy at the
library. He invited me to dinner. I said yes. Do I really need
“big scenes” in Secaire? Can’t I use “psychic brushes?” Fear
it’s a non-commercial mishmash. I want it to be unique – but
they don’t like that. R. says I’m a beginner who is trying to take
control. Probably true. Despising myself for wanting to tell him
I’ve decided to take up dancing again. I don’t owe him anything.
He wants me to make a big glamorous financial splash WITHOUT
writing genre, taking money from Mom or Dad or dancing!!! Who’s
the beginner trying to take control?
Sat 16 Apr 77
Told R no more phone conversations. They are
not good for me. (He told me he cannot “allow” me to go to
a male gyno!!! Just evil.) He countered, What if I need you?
And I just started shivering. His seeming “tenderness” while
he makes his attacks fools my brain (and heart) but not my body.
I said let’s give it a month. Please. See what happens. I didn’t
want to say why I’m trying so hard to live without him – but it’s
because he makes me feel impotent. Pretty sure he hasn’t
guessed. So I can still hold up my head a little bit. But he’ll
figure it out fast if this goes on. He asked can he break the
silence if he can’t bear it? I said yes. He wrote down the
date of the reunion and that was it.
Trying to read a disgusting student novel for Chloe –
called her needing reassurance I don’t have to read the
whole thing. It is AWFUL. Sex among art students. Bad sex,
bad art. Out with Keith I got contact dislodged and started
muttering about the fact that makeup and contacts don’t mix.
I said to him, “You don’t wear much makeup do you?’ He said,
“Just some base and a little color.” Funny.
Mon 18 Apr 77
Feel like I’m recovering from some awful disease.
The slightest effort depletes me. Thinking about Keith;
I don’t want a relationship without sex. It’s the staff of life.
Going without is like dieting – attending parties where you
watch everyone else partake. But I don’t want to have
sex with him, and I don’t want a relationship that’s only sex,
which appears to be what’s on offer from the attaché of
Trinidad-Tobago. He invited me to the International Hotel
for dinner – turned out to be in his room!! Room service!
No thank you! I said. He says, “Nobody thinks anything of it
on the “Continent” (which is ridiculous.) He is married, used
a false name, please. I said No thank you. He had the grace
to apologize mightily, take me to my favorite restaurant L’Escargot,
and gave me a case of bitters from the trunk of his car ! How
“break up” with Keith when we are not an item? I guess I just
have to start turning him down. Chloe sicced some horrible
poet on me who wants me to read her memoir. I don’t think I
like the “literary life”.
Tues 19 Apr 77
Forcing myself not to call R. Starting to suffer sexually.
Gotta have something. But I don’t want to see what lies beneath
Keith’s suit.
Wed 20 Apr 77
Beginning the novel AGAIN in accordance with my
latest idea. Reading Shelley at work. Chloe’s latest find, Erika is
lesbian poet with a fetish for black girls. She picks them up at clubs.
Kicks them out without breakfast. Ryder called. He doesn’t want to
wait until the twenty-second because he will be in Boston for a job
interview! I was polite but distant, listening to his tales of “growth”.
Said he’s been “comforting” his friend Sherry who sounds like a
poor wretch. I know I was supposed to get jealous but she sounded
sexually unborn; “No one has ever really “touched” her. I know I was
supposed to ask if he’d assumed the job. Refused. Did get kind of
excited about Boston, however, telling him how wonderful it is. Bliss to
shed all of this and just start over.

    23 Apr 77
    Mason and Avril borrowing $500 from Dad so they can 

move to Calif! Sounds definite. I’m sad. Don’t think he’s good for
her but in my experience there’s only one way to find that out. If she
goes I inherit a quantity of very nice furniture (including cute little
rolltop desk.) Got 3 free bottles of wine from Amis des Vins so invited
Shoulders over to celebrate. He is beautiful but has far too roving an
eye for my comfort. (The Master of One Night Stands.) I need to rely
on knowing where my next emotional meal is coming from. Or you
can blame my compulsive need to be worshipped.

    Broadcast Agency – Wash DC – 21 Apr 77 4:55PM
    Peaceful job bordering on narcosis. Sitting in my own little 

office, feet up on windowsill till something happens – staff places
most of their calls themselves. Switching over to newer system means
my recently acquired talents soon will be obsolete and I am so
backward in my thinking that this is just fine with me as long as
they leave me alone for now. Reading more Woolf; her interesting
artist/critic fusion.
Avril called asking about R: Am I kicking and screaming
sufficiently against my fate? No. I want him to show his real self to me
in all its horror so I know where I am. Seems like he is good at saying
he loves me and wants me when I am not around. No use to me. I
demand constant growth & rebirth and he doesn’t like that. So, not a
healthy state of affairs.
Endless diet of vegetables & yogurt, yogurt & vegetables.
To think I used to believe “being published” made all the difference! In
fact, screaming madness seems just a shot away. How can you trust
anyone who doesn’t know who they are (much less care who you are!)
Walk myself to exhaustion at night through darkened Chevy Chase,
remembering the old days when A. & I used to slip into people’s pools.
Ah youth.

    Bus – 12:25 PM Fri 22 Apr 77
    Hot day, dreamy and content. Secaire at 40,000 words coming 

along just fine. Reading Rosalind Ashe’s Moths. 100 degrees out.

    5:15 PM
    Mr. Pierce rooting in my desk finds my pornographic sample

telegrams. (They look like cut & paste objets d’art.) I say obviously I
didn’t send them and he reluctantly believes me since they’re not on
charge list. But he was horrified and looked at me with unpleasantly
new eyes. My days here could be numbered. R. is triggering flashbacks
to worst aspects of my marriage to Bruce. Our marriage failed because
of his character: he dove for cover in a shelter that held only one. He was
a weak, shiftless, spineless, pathetic liar, so now we know I have a
propensity for those. Time for dinner? I brought pears, cheese, pineapple,
bread. Finishing The Pursuit about Shelley – so involving and fantastic
I should just start it over again the minute I get to last page (as I
did with Anna Karenina). A good desert island book. I make a vow
not to drink alone. Dangerously depressed. Sexual hunger is bad
news. Standards could plummet. Pool of possibles restricted.
Starting to understand how “good sex” can actually be a
bad thing in a relationship. Wishing R will move to Boston to take
care of my situation but he’s too much of a “home boy”. The opposite
of a world citizen.

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