Wednesday, August 20, 2014

That White Boy and Puerto Rican Girl

To Sophia

Sophia was in St. Clair's Thimble donating clothing to the thrift store on Girard Avenue. It's next to Rosa's (pretzels and water ice to live for) and just three doors away from 5th Street. It became St. Benedict's Thrift Shop. (now closed)
St. Clair's Thimble use to be on Girard Ave. near Shackmaxon years ago. My family donated our clothing there too and also supported St Francis's Inn.
Sophia spoke softly and presented a bag full of clothing. She pulled some tops out onto the table to show the store keeper that words really do have smiles. She was a joy to watch.
I wanted to get in and out of the shop before I figured out that I was getting stupid. You know, girl stupid.
She was pretty and I was, how you say, skazzy. Oh! Scuzzy looking. My face had a good day. No pimples on the battlefield. My long hair was nowhere near a mirror before and during when I was noticed. I just had to meet that girl.
"You should grab 'em before someone else does", put a stunned smile on the shop keepers alerted face. She replied and said something and something else and something while looking at both Sophia and me. I wasn't listening.
Sophia's skin was a soft flawless brown with hair that just barely brushed her shoulder. She stood with her head not too high or lower than the calm. She looked at me and the shopkeeper with a smile and even when she spoke her closing words, "Good-bye."
I, my mind, my total existence screaming, "WHAT!" She's walking to the door. I got a bag of clothing. The door is closing and she's on the pavement. The smiling shopkeeper is talking to me. Sophia's walking down the street. I don't know. I left the bag on the table and opened that door. I'm not stupid.
Gone With The Wind, I said, "May I walk with you?" She said, "Yes." She told me her name was Sophia.
Her eyes, my eyes became the eyes we all want to look into. It happened that fast. We were trying so hard not to be giggling. I was the lucky one because I couldn't see how my hair was shape shifting around in the breeze. She did and still we walked together. It was fun conversation. She was easy to be with.
I asked if I could walk her home. Sophia saw what was not allowed. Her father. Her Mother. Her family. It was the late 1960's. "No." she said. I couldn't hear what else she was saying. I was listening to something else.
"I want to see you again." "You're nice." She looked at me. Her eyes, my eyes became the eyes we all want to gaze into. The silence was a billion years a second of each of it's passing.
We started laughing. We would meet at Front and Master St tomorrow around 6:30 after diner.

We met and spontaneously found Elvis.

Kiss my quick, while we still have this feeling.
Hold me close and never let me go.
'Cause tomorrows can be so uncertain
Love can fly and leave just hurting
Kiss me quick because I love you so.

What a night. The moon was bright. The night was alive with stars. I reminisce and fill with desire. Just the thought of her lips. She could kiss.* We had all of this even before we really spoke to each other. "Hi."
We walked under the El and she let me hold her hand. Sophia started to giggle and laugh and then we kissed some more. This kiss was slower, slowly into a long embrace. We both knew who we are. We didn't need any help to understand any of this. Her eyes, my eyes became the eyes we all want to find a way too. We started smiling and talking as we continued our walk. 
We were hidden. We had to be hidden to find what other's wouldn't or couldn't see. I tend to think people weren't looking at all.  What a night. We both knew who we are.
We would meet in two days. I didn't care if we couldn't phones each other. We would meet in two days.
Two days to betrayal. Sophia's father over-heard her girlfriend tease her about her boyfriend. A white boy! Two days passed and I waited for her. 
Sophia couldn't stay. Her father keeps hollering at her. He's mad as hell because it's spreading around the family. A white boy! "You better not!" "Where are you going?" He said he'd go looking for her. She lingers for a kiss slowly into an embrace. We hold this moment to say good-night.
We will meet four days from now.
I couldn't wait so I just started walking where I thought she might be. I didn't need any help understanding any of this. Maybe I would walk down her street. This sucks but why do I have a smile on my face? Talk about getting stupid, you want my autograph?
We were meeting on New Market St around eleven. It was a nothing kind of Saturday morning oblivious to chicanery, safe passage, forbearance of the heart. Even the way I say things is changing. She's running. "They saw me." "They're coming." "They'll beat you up." My God, we kissed. We held each other in a kiss. I saw a tear.
We had company and I started to think I'd come up with something. Two four door cars and out pops eight guys. You didn't have to count to know it. Sophia goes right to her father hoping to protect me. He grabs her by her arm, her bicep, upward. "Don't you hurt her." I pointed my finger at the father as two guys slammed me against the wall and held me there. The father let her go and motioned to get in the car. I never saw her again. Got off with a warning, me and Elvis.

"Such a Night"

"But before that dawn, Yes before that dawn...Such a night."

true story by roman blazic_all rights reserved




  1. You turned this story into a musical. Brilliant!

  2. I hate you Roman My wife is driving me crazy with that Elvis song.