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I met him 52 years ago

I married him 50 years ago

I met him again yesterday

And the day before that

And last week

And last year


 My sons drop in

But I cannot say their names

I am afraid I will mix them up

So I say nothing

I nod

And attempt a smile

Not convincingly

I am sure.


Do they know that I know?

Do they know how unhappy it makes me?



But not sad all the time

From my chair I

Sometimes visit San German

I see my Momi and Popi

I see my friends.


There is Sally and Fredi

Wanda and Margarita

Sally’s brother Poppy

Don’t forget Tonita!


There are others

I forget their names

We all belonged to “Club Indio”

The club met on Sally’s front steps

Or Somewhere on Calle Victoria.


Later we had boyfriends

We walked on the town square

San German

Past Porta Coeli

Puerto Rico

Up and down the “City of Hills”


In my mind I can see

InterAmerican University

The market place




Puerto Rican Food

Mamacita buying banana leaf

For making pasteles


The food images come easily

Maybe because of the fragrances.


But now I am in my new country

My adopted country

My Spanish has gone

My English has followed

I am silent.


I am thirsty

I do not remember my water glass

Maybe he will offer me some

He sometimes forgets

I always forget

We miss each other

While sitting together.


The TV keeps talking

I watch

It takes up my time

I don’t know what they say

He doesn’t listen to what they say

He has his computer

I think he loves it

More than me.


And so I visit San German

The “City of Hills”

That once was by  the Caribbean

and La Paguera

Where pirates raided

My ancestors moved San German

Over the mountains

Piece by piece

And built Porta Coeli

And San German

And its steep streets

And the square.


Then Hotel Oasis

Then La linea came

And the market place

The cementerio

Cementario Porto Coeli San German

Where Mamacita






And others

Now sleep.


It is not for me

I have a new place

In my new country

Where he and I will sleep together

Maybe I will remember his name

Maybe he will remember my water

Maybe we will travel once more

To San German.


That would make me happy

I could visit Sally and Margarita

I could visit my sisters

And brothers

All thirteen of them.


Maybe mamacita would comb my hair

And Popi would let me sit on his lap

To play with the hairs growing from his ears

And I would have my own pony again

And I could play with the children

Of the sugar cane workers

And walk on the steep streets of San German.

Calle Victoria

© Copyright – Waldo Tomosky