She Has Two Men
Available for all the major holidays, her birthday, family gatherings.
Pays for dinners, baseball and movie tickets.
Brings her flowers, wine, candy. Opens the car door.
Calls every few days to say “hello, how are you? How was your day?”
He makes love to her by the numbers, with sensual yet technical skill.
He has found some of the sweet spots:
the side of her neck just below the ear, the back of her knees, the dark areolas which crown her nipples, and the tender taint between her vagina and anus.
Though he has read all the books, he still can’t quite stroke or lick or suck in just the right way.
And he wants to make love, she wants to fuck.
Eager to see him go, she never asks him to stay, tells him no when he asks.
He pulls on pants, combs his hair, kisses her goodbye.
She showers, changes the bed linens, removing all trace of his scent.
He is financially stable and worries about nothing at all. Asks no questions, entertains no dark thoughts. He is pedestrian, suburban, center-of-the road, totally devoid of any passion, filled with a stubborn naiveté, and completely lacking any imagination.
He is a very nice man.
The other is complicated.
Sometimes dark and brooding, wallowing in a sinister, pessimistic view of the day and the future. Sometimes light-hearted, making puns and giggling. Always passionate and intense. No half measures – it is all or nothing. He is often broke, lives from day-to-day. Lacks financial and mental stability. His imagination runs away from him and he stays up until all hours of the night, worrying, wondering, writing, drinking. He sleeps it all off during the day.
She comes to him at his place and he keeps her up till 4AM. They talk, argue politics, art, philosophy. They listen to opera – he exclaiming over the intricate triad of baritone, tenor, soprano. She clutches her hands to her throat, her heart, sighs with fear and longing. She knows the lovers in the opera will come to no good end.
Afterwards, they fuck wildly, forcefully, unafraid of lust, desire. Whisper rough words to each other. Satiate themselves with each other over and over again until they must stop – before she is bruised too badly, before he is rubbed too raw, because they have nothing left. Neither is gentle with the other until they are done; then they stroke each other’s faces momentarily before turning away, apart, exhausted.
They fall asleep in a tangle of condom wrappers and sheets stained with lubricating gellee, bodies slick with juice and sweat. They sleep long and hard, his back presses against her breasts, her knee rests on his buttocks.
Later in the week she sees the nice guy. He has bought tickets to the ballgame. She asks him questions about the game, he answers patiently, crack jokes, then meekisly explains the punch lines, even after she has laughed. He sees her home, sits next to her on the couch and executes what he knows to be the requisite sequence of foreplay moves, then carries her to the bedroom. She responds to his touch appropriately, until he thinks she is spent, but he is too gentle, too thoughtful to milk her through and through. He is tender and she responds in kind for he is a nice guy. Her hands move gently across his chest and down the inside of his thigh yet she feels no tenderness toward him – her movements are as technically accurate as his.
When he leaves, she strips the bed of its sheets, pours herself a glass of wine from the bottle he brought. Wine glass in hand, she lights candles and blasts opera on her stereo, weeping in the candlelight as the baritone and soprano tangled in love, lust, and deceit, reach their apex and tear each other apart.