I might have twisted his words to hear an insult because it was my expectation at the time.
I wasn't sure if a man would ever love me.
But in retrospect, I see he loved me.
And I guess the fact that he went to a therapist to talk about me is also a hint.
I went with him to visit his family in Minnesota.
They were very white and by that I mean people who had had little or no experience with people of color, with the belief that people of color were stuck in communities that desperately needed their help or at least a donation.
They had pictures of girls who looked like me on their refrigerator.
It was The Save the Children Fund I believe.
S and I fucked constantly.
Before going to sleep, in the middle of the night, before breakfast, in public libraries, on rooftops.
But not here in Minnesota.
His parents would have none of that.
We sat at the table together for dinner.
S looked at me with the most lustful look I have ever seen in a man's eyes.
But we would not be up to any sexual shenanigans here because his parents put us up in separate bedrooms.
We passed each other in the hall on the way to the bathroom and did all the groping we could before going to our respective quarters.
S and I used to shower together every day in NYC.
But not here because theirs was a solidly upper middle class Christian household.
S was not into athletics but I was.
I really wanted to go canoeing and to my surprise S was willing.
We got up at 6, wolfed down some pieces of toast and gulped down some coffee.
He seemed especially anxious to go out and I was impressed.
It was atypical - for him to get up early, to do sports or to get up early to do sports.
It was chilly, quiet and slightly damp as if we were walking underwater.
We pushed the canoe from land to water, he helped me in gently holding my hand and we paddled out into the middle of the lake where we watched a bald eagle fly above us.
We made it to the other end of the river where the dense woods captured all stray sounds and held them in silence.
S pulled the canoe to dry land; he worked hard to pull the canoe up against a beautiful old tree with a tremendous trunk.
He began to kiss me.
We climbed into the canoe to lie together in the cold in the quiet in the seclusion from the world and Christian dogma.
And yes, the metal felt cold against bare skin.