She joins me in my bed and I yearn for her.

Not every night, you understand.  No, not every night does she join me although certainly most nights I yearn for her.  But then I am but a man and a man has needs and for this I make no apology.

No not every night does she join me, but most nights at least.

And so, it seems, does she have needs.  For sometimes she calls to me but I am often unable to join her.

Too busy, too agitated, to dissuaded to be able to comply.  Does not, she understand that which goes through my mind, the difficulties that I face?  It appears not, for when I fail to respond to her calls she in turn withdraws from me often for days – despite my explanations, my pleadings.

And yet how much I still need her in my life.

She refreshes me.  Renews me. In many ways she completes me – managing to somehow put back together, albeit only temporarily, all the parts of me that seem at odds with each other.  For sometimes she will join me in my bed, simply caressing me, soothing me, healing me.  Giving of herself and demanding nothing in return.

Never have we gone there together, to my bed I mean.  Instead always she chooses to wait until I have disrobed and more often than not until I have settled.  As if settled could ever be an apt description of me?

Some nights, some glorious nights, although these I must admit are very rare, our union is immediate.  No waiting.  No teasing.  No discussion, digression, distraction or delay.  But mostly I must wait for her it seems.

My wife, for yes once I too was united in marriage,  had  (at least for the most part) a recognized routine.  One of undressing, washing, moisturizing, preparing for bed, perhaps reading or conversing etc before settling for the night. Often she would go to our bed before me and await me.  But no. No such routine, no such ritual, no such willingness for my mistress.  Never does she go to my bed before me.  Always, if indeed she does choose to join me, she joins me later.

I cannot even say that she joins me willingly.  The label of “The reluctant mistress” was applied not as a result of any inferred guilt on her part, nor mine for that matter.  Nor by way of any displeasure on her part or mine.  Nor is it in anger or in response to anything she has ever whispered.  But merely, I assure you, in response and recognition of her behavior.

The hours I have spent awaiting her presence.  Feeling her lingering nearby and yet realizing, so obviously, her absence from me.

Nights spent imploring her to join me, needing her with every fiber of my being and yet being denied her bitter-sweet companionship.

Hours laying there alone, abandoned and confused.  Pining for a union with her for just a few short hours and yet ruthlessly denied, until I grow so desperate that I would gladly, willingly, accept it if she joined me there forever.  Never to leave,  never to separate, never to wake.

Oh don’t get me wrong.  Don’t be fooled into any sweet romanticized misconception that my need for you stems from any love or passion or beguilement.  No.  My need for you, my bitter-sweet reluctant mistress, reflects not any chemistry between us, but simply the biology within me.  My need of you, heck even my desire for you, is I am afraid – for me at least, purely physical.

But then, as I have already pointed out, I am simply a man, and you – you my reluctant mistress – are simply sleep.