T was right, we would never be a couple. Anyway that's not what I wanted. My desire was intense but formless, like the longing for a long lost country which never existed. I wanted to belong to him and for him to belong to me but without any of the structures which usually define such belonging. Not absolute freedom either, oh no! I did not want freedom to seek other men and absolutely did not want T to even look at another woman covetously.

Happiness was having his whole attention wrapped around me like a blanket, keeping out the cold. Misery was to see his attention fixed on any attractive female person other than myself. Childish and stupid, yes, but awareness of my foolishness did not alter it in the slightest.

Sexual jealousy is like an insect, a mosquito resistant to any measures you may take to protect yourself. It keeps on buzzbuzzing incessantly and biting you until no part of your being is free from its poisonous sting and the excruciating itch which accompanies it.

In retrospect I can see that I was addicted to jealousy, high on the despair of not being Number One. Probably because my fear of being Number One was much greater than my despair at not being granted that status. But scrawling page after page of heated self-analysis late at night never gave me satisfaction and Mick Jagger's pouting, prancing complaint, while echoing the beat of my relentless self-absorption, did nothing to relieve it.

When we were at the pub one night T said to a mutual friend, "I know how to make Nat happy but I'm not going to do it because......" he let the sentence trail away. I knew what the rest of it was: " It would mean making her the centre of my life". Neither of us really wanted to change the status quo and so it remained.

In public T carried on playing the lothario role, capturing the audience's adoration with his teasing and his stories while I burned with jealousy. But in private moments there was honesty, tenderness, uncomplicated pleasure in each other's company and, eventually, creative collaboration.

Nat workin in T's kitchen

Working in T's kitchen

T making silly face ar table with Nat

T making silly faces

T and Nat at Hornsey College of Art party

At Hornsey College of Art party




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