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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Poetry  |  House: Booksie Classic

Submitted: March 22, 2016

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Submitted: March 22, 2016



To me,
Sophia's father,
although Polish,
seemed like
an Italian Mafia boss,
and as I stood
at the front door
of Sophia's parents' house,
I pondered whether
to ring the bell,
or take flight
into the evening sky
before the dark night.

Sophia said she hoped
I'd come to dinner,
as her father
had invited me
and he hated
to be let down.

I rang the bell.

I waited staring
at the light come on
in the glass top
of the front door.

Sophia's father opened
the door and the image
of a Mafia Godfather
seemed confirmed.

the father said,
steely eyed,
short but stocky.

Welcome Benny,
he added,
standing back
to allow me
to pass him by.

I passed him by,
smiling weakly,
hoping Sophia
would come
to my rescue.

Go through,
the father said,
pointing to the room
at the end
of the passage.

I walked along
the passage
and entered the room.

Sophia was sitting
on the sofa,
her mother was standing
by the kitchen door,
gazing at me.

Sit down,
the mother said in Polish,
eyeing me uncertainly.

I stared
at the mother
wondering what
she had said.

Mum said you can sit
next to me,
Sophia said,
patting the place
next to her
on the sofa.

I sat down
and smelt Sophia's perfume
which was overpowering.

The father entered
the room slowly.

Help your mother,
he said in Polish
to Sophia.

Sophia jumped up
and followed her mother
into the kitchen.

I watched her go,
then gazed at the father.

Women's work,
the father said,
we talk.

He sat in the armchair
opposite me,
leaning forward.

You go to Mass
The father said.

each Sunday,
I replied,
knowing I went
as often as I could,
but not each Sunday.

You like children?
The father said.

I nodded.

We like grandchildren,
the father said.

I smiled,
looked at the father's
the lips opening
and closing.

After marriage the sex,
not before,
the father said.

Yes of course,
I said,
trying to push away
the image of Sophia
and me,
banging away
in the parent’s bed,
some weeks before,
while they were out,
the headboard hitting
the wall at the top
of the bed,
banging my head.

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