Oyster Boy Review 08  
  January 1998
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» Levee 67


David Bowie Sex Dream #3

Kevin McGowin

Me and Bowie wake up in a holding cell and I don't know what we're in for but I know that we're in Valdosta, Georgia. There are several other people there too, lying around on the floor in various uncomfortable positions. I know that Bowie and I didn't come in together; he looks tired. "Why did you write that rubbish about me?" he asks. "Don't you know the only thing's the saxophone?" I remind him he's an actor, an artist and an archetype as well as a musician. He waves a dismissive hand and admits it's true. His fingers are longer than I'd have thought, like a Madonna's in a Mannerist painting. He's shrunk a foot since being locked up, somebody says.

The cops are coming to let us out. My Camry's outside but Bowie doesn't have a ride. He doesn't ask, just gets inside the car with me and sighs deeply. "Bunch of shit, wasn't it" he observes. He reaches in my glove box and gets out the peppermint schnapps. "According to what I said on the BBC documentary," he says as he takes a swig, "I don't drink anymore." We both laugh. This is indeed a hoot. "This is retroactive transformation," he says now. "Ah," I say, "So they locked us up in anticipation of what we did later today in the Okefenokee Swamp." "Right-O!" he says as he taps the end of his right index finger against the tip of my nose and grows back to his real height, which is a bit shorter than I expected. "It's already taken place."

And I recall sitting with him by a tree stump and playing Old Maid, which incidentally was originated in 1844 according to the Oxford English Dictionary: Shorter Edition, on which I'm sitting so as not to dirty my dungarees. Bowie is winning. He slides me a sly glance. "Now you know," he screams. And I look with panic at the cards on the stump but they depict the bedchamber of a castle somewhere in Moorish Spain where I'm rubbing linseed oil all over Bowie's back while he sits in front of a 1967 RCA TV set watching some rugby team beating up on the Green Bay Packers. The Packers punt on fourth down. "Should have gone for it," Bowie says, and I realize he's bored. He looks over his shoulder at me. "Let me pretend you're a different man," he whispers.

I tell him that whatever man that is is the man I've always wanted to be. I feel his palm against my chest. I look up and we're hydroplaning off a bridge going 80 on I-90 South. He grasps me, firmly. "The birds are molting," he chuckles. We're both breathing heavy and fast.

When we hit the water the water disappears and we stop outside of space and time as he pinches my nipples. I'm enveloped by his swan's wings and hidden from the sun. Night falls and I see cards pattern themselves along the stars. "What does that mean?" I ask him as he finishes inside me. He doesn't hear.

When he opens his eyes we're back in the holding cell. He's lying back and hands me a card. I take it and wish I was sleeping in a real bed. I look at the card and I see that I am. The upper left-hand corner is bent, and I know that Bowie is cheating. "It's like the sheets," he says. He touches my shoulder and I wake up kicking, the covers flapping like white flags in wind.