Some Foreign Film
Raina Moore
S he made the mistake of being honest. Of telling the truth about some lovers. All lovers, in fact. Far more lovers than he cared to hear about. And though he had slept with plenty more, his stories remained nameless and fuzzy while hers were long and clear as water from an open tap. So much so that whenever he made love to her, he felt the shadows of these men (and, Christ, a few women) deep inside her. His cock could barely navigate around all those other cocks, could barely get hard, until something of a sword fight took place, until he won. And in the mornings, when he left for the office, he could not help but feel they were keeping her company while he was gone. Stories about trains and threesomes and foreign countries swam laps in his head, day in and day....he paused some mornings, to watch her sleep for she didn't have to work since his partnership at the firm. Her face had no lines. She was free to move freely, ceramics class, lunch with girlfriends. She had the habit, when she was younger, of living her life like some foreign film, recklessly, full of art and indiscretion. And it was disturbing, the details, because he was a lawyer and details disturbed him, drove him, put the roof over their heads and snapped them behind seatbelts, firmly.

"How is it," he would ask, a steak before him, a glass of red wine to his right, "that you were with Carlos before Suzanne?"

"I don't remember."

"But if they were a couple, and you slept with them as a couple, then that night in the parking lot was before you were with the both of them. That means you were his mistress before you were their lover," he swished his steak knife above his head.

"You're the lawyer."

"And you?"

He thought to hire a private investigator but thought that was ridiculous, then did it anyway. He was presented with pictures of his wife leaving the pottery studio, lunching with friends.

What did he think he'd find? A woman, his wife, at one of her kooky friends' apartments, tangled up in a 69, giggling at the irony of licking another woman's pussy? Videotapes of them smoking opium then philosophizing about the size of another man's cock? He took the photos and dumped them in the garbage beside the ATM on the way home. But he was in the habit of imagining her sleeping with another man every time he slept with her, that he was getting the scraps of what was left of her. Of wishing she were still cast in the flicker of the film.

First published: October 1999