I’ve always been somewhat of a voyeur—peering slyly through windshields at couples kissing in cars, peeking through partially opened doors in my apartment building, checking out the lives of those around me. Hoping for a glance, a tease, the start of a story.
Sometimes, the images I see linger for days, filling my mind, my waking and sleeping hours. These are my treasures, and I guard them jealously within myself until I am ready to write. While sitting on a subway, I once watched a woman stroke her lover’s hand, absentmindedly twisting the silver ring around and around her girlfriend’s finger. I’m sure she wasn’t even aware she was doing it, but the picture was powerful to me, and it stayed.
I’ve seen couples kissing in stairwells, lusting in elevators, grinding against each other on dance floors in dimly lit bars. My imagination takes over from there, from the embrace and the hungry look given under lowered lashes to the bedroom where fantasy becomes reality. Each time I catch a glimpse, it’s like looking through an open window into a life I know nothing about. During these secret and seductive moments, I crane forward, hoping to see a little bit more before the shades are drawn.
The open windows in these tales reveal women in many stages of life and sexual awakening: a hesitant beauty whose friend helps her find a self she was not aware she possessed; two lonely travelers caught together during a snowstorm; a slave tied to a bed, regarding a blue sky from a window that seems sideways.
Through window #1, first floor, Apartment 1A, you’ll meet two women, limbs entwined, a red-maned lynx with her head gently resting on the body of a slinky brunette. The early morning sunshine cascades through the blinds, striping their embracing bodies in shadow and light. Lovely they are, and even from a distance one can feel the heat, their early morning body-warmth they lend to each other.
In apartment 1B, just next door, Danielle and Victoria might listen to the sweet, kittenish noises of two women making love. But they’re too enthralled in their own crashed-out world, taking in a late night movie. The girlfriends’ power structure is easily recognizable. Victoria exudes control in the simple movements of her body, in the way she strokes Dani’s tiger-like bangs away from the girl’s eyes. Focus the high-powered lens, bring it in tight on Victoria’s lips, on the line of her mouth as she utters a command. You can feel it can’t you? The power in that voice, subtle and threatening.
Through these windows you will find lovers, many lovers, each with different definitions of love. (Dark chuckle here) for love comes in many degrees: from fiery hot and scalding to icy as it cools a troubled soul. You’ll find turn-ons, assorted desires, different flavors. Because, if you haven’t guessed it all ready, I’ll tell you a secret: Turn-ons turn me on.
Turn-ons get me wet, get me hard, get the muscles in my back all tensed up with unfilled desires. People whisper their secrets to me, they tell me what they think about late at night, when they’re all alone and no one’s watching. People confess their sins to me, their fantasies, their dreams.
I say, “C’mon, darlin’, tell me what you want. Tell me what turns you on.”
I say it to you, “C’mon, angel, let me into your head, let me snoop a little. Let me read your soul.”
I give as good as I get, you know. I will not let you down. Reveal yourself to me... then peek into the windows of this book. Be a voyeur. Then take what you’d like back into your own world . . . and leave your shades up a bit to give the neighbors a thrill.
The Fine Print: My, my, my. This book was published on July 15, 1996. Time has flown the coop. I've been threatening for years to reprint the words. Now, I'm going to put them up here, and we'll see where they take us. I'm trying my best to keep my editing to myself, but of course I've been unable not to tweak slightly. (My stories are never really finished.) This post will serve as the table of contents—built story by story. As I re-read the intro all I could think was, "The more I change, the more I stay the same." Honestly: apartments, jealousy, roommates...
Here is the TOC (a work in progress):