The Transparent Man by Grace Andreacchi
He stands in the corner of the biology classroom at Mount St. Ursula, a man made entirely of glass. Naked eyeballs grinning monster teeth delicate bones sheaths of bright red muscle a map of blue veins neatly coiled pink intestines dark brown liver and the serpentine sex. At the very centre the heart. It looks a little thing, slightly awry, wedged between the soft wings of the lungs. I hated biology class, where we were required to cut up the bodies of little dead animals. It was somehow horrible, like the woman being fucked by the horse. I couldn’t do it, and ran out into the hallway in tears. But I loved the transparent man. For one thing, his was the only penis on display at Mount St. Ursula.
Sometimes, when we’d been fucking all afternoon, I’d feel you become the transparent man. Your great white body like Leda’s swan between my thighs would become transparent and I could see right through to your backbone, see your delicate pink insides, the pulsing blood red and blue, the beating heart. The blue veins starting out beneath the pale skin like the map to a secret world.
I lean over you tracing them with my finger. This is
my body. The sad angel watching us from his place on the ceiling. There’s a pasture betwixt your breastbone and the rising of your sex, a pasture for me to play in. Little wild thing set free. There’s a garden entirely surrounded by fire for me to play in. There, between your ribs, I’ve made a nest for myself. Come here, you say. Closer. Closer. Now we are not two but one transparent thing, an octopus of light moving in the underwater darkness. Cries and whispers. Shouts of oblivion. When you come your face is suffused with a joy so intense it resembles sadness.
Here’s a game: You lie on your back and bid me come and play. Do what you want with me, you say.
Giving me the whole of you. I lick the hard white surface of your chest and belly touch the tiny dark hairs around the nipples and the navel the curved whalebones of the ribs under thin white skin the inner clockwork of the transparent man. This bright red engine is your heart this black knot your liver these rivers of lapis lazuli your blood. I wind my thin hands around those tree trunk thighs, take hold of your cock and run my tongue up and down
the silky shaft till you hiss like a snake between your teeth. Like an ice cream cone, like you taught me, like an ice cream cone only better. Oh that’s so good, so good… you whisper, drawing your brows together as if you’ve hurt yourself. I put my nose on your nose and stare down into your transparent eyes where your soul is. Climb on, you say, helping me onto you. You press with your great thumb the magic button my head hits the ceiling and then the roof flies off as we gallop away on a river of stars.
Bio: Grace Andreacchi is a novelist, poet and playwright. Works include the novels Scarabocchio and Poetryand Fear, Music for Glass Orchestra (Serpent’s Tail), Give My Heart Ease (New American Writing Award) and the chapbooks Ten Poems for the End of Time and Berlin Elegies.
Illustration: Alexandru Coman