The sun slants through the curtains as their two hands reach over and they sort of grab at first but then relax. They explore the knuckles, the wrists, the elbows. They don’t giggle but there is some nervous shifting, some more drinking from beers. Wet barley lips. One is from Oklahoma, and came out west to direct movies. The other lived in Oregon, in a clapboard house with an attic where he gathered bird nests from trees. They remember their first kiss with a girl, the years of masturbating in the shower before their sisters would bang on the door, yelling about hot water.
They are touching each others’ arms now, with freckles, with downy hair. Touch his stomach, I say, to both. Four eyes beam up at me, frightened. It’s okay, I say. It’s for me, I say. Please. And their hands, shaking slightly, reach down under the loose t-shirts and just glance over their stomachs, which have tiny lines of sweat forming in the creases from sitting.
I am in my chair. They feel scared, even from over here, but not awful scared. They’re open-hearted and they can stand it. They have untested liberal minds. They are also getting turned on. Their faces move closer together as one grazes the inner arm of the other.
Kiss him, I say, out loud.
The light through the drawn curtains is a dark red and partially obscures their clean-shaven faces. They lean in, and their cheeks bump at first and finally touch. Their lips, so soft. They are tentative and frightened, faces pressing gently against each other. Lips meet. Boy lips on boy lips. I love watching them. I could watch them for hours. Their heads leaning and listing, the lips learning what to do, how almost-familiar it all is.
One stops. Looks at me. Is this alright? he asks. His lips glisten. Why don’t you come join us —