10-Lover’s Trysts Meeting Grounds
Lover’s Trysts Meeting Grounds
As it happened, the lake was one of the favorite places on the isle for lovers to meet, especially at the end of the week. And so one night, the lake was filled with their sounds. Early on, one could hear murmurings and whispers drift about. Then later on, a chorus of feminine moans and cooing sounds, then groans and cries arose from the bords of the lake in all directions. All the stages were mixed, so that the cries of one mingled with the first cooing sounds of another.
Sometimes it seemed that the women were competing. Who could sing this song of love more beautifully? Who more intently, passionately? Who the loudest? Whose song could go on the longest? And whose cries could shatter glass? The lake waters always amplified their cries, so they were louder and more resonant here than anywhere.
The men were normally more quiet. But late in the night one could sometimes hear a loud low base note, or a trumpet like bellow from one of the men.
The men of the isle knew well that if their woman seemed a bit distant or cool on a particular day, they had only to bring her to the lake to hear her sing again. The lake would bring out the song in her.
It didn’t take much. When a woman was lying on her back, in a wet field of poppies and tulips full of scent, and the night air was full of various chirping birds, the cries of the loon, the gurgling brook, and then her sisters all about the lake, with their coos and moans and cries dangling musically all about her, she too then felt the urge to sing emerge from somewhere deep within her. Sometimes she thought she could recognize a particular singer. ‘That must be Alicia. Her notes are always long and plaintive, and she usually comes at about this hour.’ Just as birdwatchers become adept at indentifying various birdcalls, so the people here were adept at indentifying individuals mating calls. They studied it as a hobby.
Sometimes a woman would recognize the singing of a close girlfriend across the lake. Then her own song would grow louder and try to reach out to that of her friend. Both their songs and their spirits would meet and mingle out over the lake while they both were being made love to. They would each urge their man to adapt their rhythm to that of the other pair across the lake. It was as if the four of them were making love together, by spirit and sound. While the men drove the beat and the bass, they depended on their women for the communication and to orchestrate this symphony.
Instead of ‘making love’, islanders say they’re ‘making song.’
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Hears Dying Moans
There were more than just the moans of lovers. There were the moans of the dying, as well. They had a different timbre, a different pathos to them. It was not until much later that Tomek learned that the dying of the isle of also come here, to the lake, to voice and expire their last ebbs of life, there amongst the lovers, so that the dying and the loving, those ‘coming’ and those going, would be blended, and so that their last breath of life would find new life in the hot breaths and murmurs of passionate couples in the very throes of life, all intertangled, coupling around the shore. Tomek could not tell the sounds of the dying from the sounds of the enflamed. Nor did he know that in recent times there had been an increase in death.
And it was not just the humans who came here to love. Tomek often heard the sounds of wild she-cats in heat, their snarls and screams piercing through the others.
All these were parts of the song of the lake. And every night, Tomek listened.