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Posts Tagged ‘Menage a Trois’

The Man in the Middle

by Michael Foster for Nerve magazine, 1997

Letha and I were naked in the mineral water Jacuzzi when Charlie knocked at the glass door.  He couldn’t see in but he was carrying a cordless phone. This is a small hotel in the hills above Palm Springs. Not much English spoken, which is why we were hiding out here. I wondered if my wife Barbara was calling from Marrakech. No, it was my publicist, and he was asking me to explain my menage a trois–living with two women–for over a dozen years. The ups, downs, little dramas and large contentment–in no more than 1,500 words.

For me the three-style in love affairs started in Brooklyn when I was four. I had two little girlfriends and the three of us would play doctor, nurse and patient. We learned what we could about each other’s anatomy. The prepubescent affair was terminated when my dad moved us way out to Long Island, but I never forgot the feeling of two females fussing over me. When I started to read novels, I would get upset if the hero had to choose between his two loves. Why couldn’t he keep them both? I figured I could because of my karma, though I didn’t know the word then. Once you hear the siren song of a threesome, you’ll know why it beats any other intimate arrangement–at least for the man in the middle.

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The Wife with a Double Life

by Barbara Foster for Nerve magazine, 1997

Civilized Frenchwomen — George Sand, Colette and  Simone de Beauvoir are my role models.

   For years, by choice, I’ve sawed myself in half emotionally in order to live a double life: daytimes a married academic, night times a Greenwich Village free spirit. A coterie of friends were hip to the masquerade; the less familiar know me as a librarian scholar engaged in research on women’s studies. One self displays a bookish facade; its shadow craves adventurous travel with lots of fucking on the side. Since each face is fed a nutritional diet, neither feels deprived. The bourgeois and the anarchist have learned to live together.

Before marriage I suffered from mental and physical constipation. Once my soul mate appeared to whisk me away from a stark parental home, the flow started. Not that I was beaten or abused –just bored to death in Philadelphia. Marriage brought me an expensive love out of a Russian novel. For several years we had great sex that precluded outside involvements. Monogamy, the first stage in our romantic cycle, gave way to a “tolerant marriage” then an “open marriage.” Some years later this evolved into a successful working ménage à trois that incorporates our significant other, Letha Hadady.

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Beat News Review

Jack Kerouac

Some new books are out. I haven’t read ‘Beat Spirit: The Way of the Beat Writers As a Living Experience’ by Mel Ash yet, but it looks appropriately unusual. On the more informational front, Steven Watson’s ‘Birth ofllie·Beat Generation’ is probably the friendliest general history ofthe Beat literary movement I’ve seen. The author has also written books about the Harlem Renaissance, the Avant-Garde Arts movement etc., and he approaches the Beats with refreshing curiousity and no pretensions, obsessions or axes to grind. The book came out a couple of years ago, but has just been rereleased in paperback with a new foreword by Robert Creeley.
Moving out onto a limb, Neal Cassady, Jack Kerouac and Carolyn Cassady show up in bed together, or close to it, in ‘Three In Love: Menages a Trois from Ancient to Modern Times,’ a fascinating new book about notable three-way sexual encounters in Western history. Other intellectual notables who show up in this book include Nietzsche, Henry Miller and the Pre-Raphaelites. The three co-authors (a man and two women, hmm, I wonder … ) cover a lot of cultural territory in this book.

March 4,1998

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