We lay in a stranger’s bed.
Just the two of us, an old
painting hung behind our heads
and listened to the stories, my
awkward hands, limp on the mattress.
I watched the freckles dance on
your face when you laughed. Before bed we
both removed our glasses.
Between sentences we studied the other,
our naked faces learning a new
language. All over again.
On the second night, I was worn
down by work. Your voice trickled
in excitement, turning each page of intimacy.
I tried to stay awake and listen to
your stories. My eyelids rocked open and
shut like an old boat.
I did not make it to the end.
I asked you in the morning about
it. You said I slurred a sentence like
a sailor, and then nothing.
You turned in the current of duvet, and
waited for waves of sleep.