014: Rainbows (Chapter 2)


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Eric Barry Writes: Poetry, Short Stories, and Writing


A working draft preview of chapter 2 of Rainbows, the novel I've been working on this year. I would really love your earnest thoughts, which you can send to ericbarrywrites@gmail.com, or on instagram @ericbarrywrites, and twitter @ericbarry. -- A great fear and fascination of sex was instilled in me at Greg’s house.   The Closet Game was indeed a game to be played hidden and away from the eyes of adults.   “Come in here with us,” Lindsay implored. “Um. I’m just gonna watch this time if that’s okay.” “What’s a matter? Are you scared?” She had no idea. “No. I just. It seems bad.” “Just get in here.”   Greg slid the closet door open slightly further, and I entered into the void.   “If you show me yours, I’ll show you mine.” I couldn’t understand how she was so confident, no fear of our judgement. Even at eight years old, she knew her negotiating power as a female. “I’ll do it next time,” I said, praying she wouldn’t persist. “I’ll go,” Greg volunteered himself. Her own brother. The Closet Game seemed to be one all too familiar to Lindsay and Greg, played countless times, a matter of routine when a guest was over.   Greg unbuttoned his corduroy pants and pulled them down to his knees, underwear and all. Lindsay took her brother’s penis in her hand, examining it with fixation. I felt my own penis become slightly engorged. Despite my reticence to engage in the game at hand, I was admittedly intrigued by Greg’s penis. It did not resemble my own. It was longer and thicker, and had an elephant trunk-like nature as it contoured to its end, with no discernible head present. Moments with my father in public restrooms had revealed that his was a man’s penis; thick and massive, that which time would some day afford me. But in seeing Greg’s penis, a fear was instilled in me: I am different than other boys, abnormal and lacking in what I have to offer. “Okay. Now it’s my turn,” Lindsay commanded. She lifted up her pink floral sundress, revealing she was not wearing panties. Her mound was bare, a stark contrast to my mother’s 1970’s inspired bush. Her slit ran down her golden tan skin until it disappeared, leaving me dumbfounded. Where was her vagina? I had always assumed the vagina hole was nestled securely behind that thick mound of hair, where a man’s penis would be. Everything I was witnessing made me deeply uncomfortable. Then Lindsay reached over and kissed Greg. She pulled back from her brother, and then brought her hands which were still holding her dress back down, and instructed her brother to pull his pants up. “That’s how you play The Closet Game.” Lindsay slid the door open and we were surrounded by light.