“I want to ask you something but don’t want make you uncomfortable.”
Oh God, please don’t ask me for sex. I can’t deal with that right now. He isn’t going to ask for comfort sex, is he? Oh Lord, he is. How do you turn down a grieving brother? A hot, grieving brother at that?
“What?” I sign, not looking at him at all.
“Could you…I mean, would it be okay if you sang to me?” My head snaps up and I look at him. He’s looking down sheepishly, but he raises his eyes to meet mine.
“Why sing if can’t hear you?”
“I can a little…if you let me put my head on your chest.” I look at him skeptically and he is quick to follow up, “I swear it’s not a line. My mom used to sing to me that way, and it’s been a while, so I was just curious if it would work with you.”
“Light on off which?” I repeat.
“I prefer low light, always on.” He flips off the main switch and turns on the nightstand light, which isn’t more than an amber glow.
I roll to my back and he places his head on my shoulder. I think about what song to sing. It’s not like it’s really going to matter much to him, but I never make a song choice without thought. Music is the sound track of life to me, so I decide something a little sad and soulful is in order. I pick ‘Hallelujah’ by Jeff Buckley. Singing while flat on your back with a person on top of you is no easy feat. I guess it doesn’t really matter what the sound is like as long as the vibration is there, so with that in mind, I keep my tone low and raspy. Luckily, I tend to feel right at home singing alto, so this works out pretty nicely.
I start off soft and low, and let the music build. He is tentative in the beginning, who am I kidding, we both are. This should be seriously awkward. We hardly know each other and we’re entering major bubble territory…yet there’s also something very innocent and pure about it. I can tell when he starts to relax and is more comfortable. I’m really letting go as well now and just singing from my soul. He moves to where his head is fully on my upper chest, right below my throat. By the third verse I stop worrying about how weird this might be and the beauty of the situation full on hits me. I’m able to give this man something that he’s never been able to give himself. Sharing the joy of music isn’t only a passion for me, it’s a need, so we are just two souls fulfilling a great need in each other.
His tears are completely silent as they slowly hit my exposed skin and pool in the hollow of my throat. They spark my own tears. The idea that I can touch him so deeply this way, giving him nothing but my voice, touches me deeply. Without thinking, I bring his arms around me and place his hands flat against my back so he isn’t only getting the sound vibrations from my chest, but he can also feel them from behind. It has its desired effect when he sighs out against my neck. The song ends but neither one of us move. To be honest, I have no words. In this type of communication words are useless. I close my eyes and go right into ‘Brightest’ by Copeland. Somewhere around ‘As my guitar gently weeps’ by the Beatles, I drift off.”