Gone Without Leaving

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Gone Without Leaving  
by Martin Roper  

I am inside Holfy, bruising myself against her creased arse, thinking about Ursula. Imagining it is her. When I’m with Ursula, she struggles but secretly she enjoys it. That weekend we spent at her father’s home, the shy way she bent away from me, her hands gripping the mantelpiece, lifting her skirt, warm pert arse against me, her father’s laughter out in the garden (even his laughter sounded English), shuddering at her cheeks brushing the curled hairs on my stomach. Only later realizing the thrill for her was doing it in her father’s bathroom; I squirmed at the odd relationship she had with the man. The evening we spent in Searsons’. Ursula noticing me noticing some skirt walk past. The moment is irretrievable. Neither of us pretend it has not happened. I am not the kind of man to be tactless and I bite my tongue for the mistake. A marriage has many endings. We said nothing. The first slip. Cracks in our lives we fall into, cracks become walls around us. I curse and curse and Holfy comes and all the time it is Ursula’s back I am looking at in anger, it’s her moaning I hear, her cunt surrounding me.


I have been lying for years — telling myself I want this kind of woman or that kind of woman. I want a woman I can fuck forever but have been too afraid to admit it. Ursula is a paragraph out of some feminist pamphlet. Holfy has changed my life. She fucks. She likes my seed leaking out of her. Soft bubbling of her cuntfarts afterward. I was afraid of my wife’s silent standard. The standards in her eyes she could never hide. That night in Searsons’ I went and got another drink and looked at her in the Smithwick’s beer mirror. She was biting the end of a hangnail. I thought then (and this was before we were married), I should walk out now. The coward leaves a thousand times and never leaves.

Martin Roper and