Love Will Bust You Heart by Pierrino Mascarino

"Go-or-or do," sung cinnamon-skinned little Graciela in front of his stainless steel sausage cart.

"Please," said Gordo, looking both ways to see who’d heard her, crowding another bacon-wrapped sausage onto his sputtering cart grill and looking up at the advancing dawn; “don’t,” although he was embarrassed it was still true, "don’ go callin’ me Gordo no more, I been rebajaing my weights to guardar mi linea."

So, little Graciela only whispered to him in a husky voice, "Mira, Gordo,” trying to be tender  through the eye-watering sausage and bacon smoke, and holding up her vase of yellow ranunculus, purple anemones, crimson poppies with a blue delphinium or two. I bring you flores,” Graciela said, waving her hand to fan away the heavy smoke from her jet black eyes, looking up at Gordo with her ancient Maya face, here in front of his brightly lit sausage cart in the rose tipped dawn.

 But, zzzzst, pop pop Gordo's sausage was spattering pig grease right up on her fleshy   anemones, slicking their delicate petals.

            "Para mi," Gordo said, "you bring? for why?" Jamming in toothpicks to secure the spiraled bacon strips onto another grey sausage.

            "For saying, ‘I love you,’ you silly Gordo," stamping her foot making her flowers jerk.

            "Love?" hardly looking at them, "dis not love time, if I not sell my salchiche this morning, I don't sell him at all. And they no good manana, don't you?"

            "What you are?" Graciella demanded, moving her head to avoid a sudden street draft that was whipping around the sausage smoke, made by an arriving flower van, "you are" (cough cough) " una bestia, who don't have no eyes and ears for de love, for seeing de mujer here que te quere?"

            "Who dis womans who love me?" said Gordo looking away.

            “ņQuien? Maldito, you know who is who love you."

            “Have a salchiche gratis," he said scooping up, in one professional motion, one of his popping, bacon-wrapped specials covered with onions and little cut bits of ajo, dripping grill grease, while he sprinkled on little round green capers and fresh cilantro.

            "Sweet Gordo," she said playfully, "please don't pretend no ignorances to me, you know I don't come to get no salchiche gratis."

            The large arrived flower van, creaked out its door and out bounced Jorge de las Poesias, famous driver-poet of the Los Angeles, Wall Street, flower district, who quickly ran round to the rear and was pulling out a long cardboard box, "Jorge,” called Graciela to him.

 "Parking costes too much," said Jorge, "I got no quarters; I wonder do Gordo tiene quarters?"

            Gordo said, "Por supuesto, I got, but only for sausage cambio, eberybody want quarters, I am salchiche not bank."

            "Muy bien, da me dos; 5 centavos, the parking minute ees costes now, de minutes are, de repente, made of goldt?" then to Graciella, "and look, quien esta, most beautiful embra of the whole flower markets, making eben de flower themself look too ugly," he smiled and winked at her, resting his large gladiolus box on the corner edge of Gordo’s smoky cart while pulling out sausage dollars.

            Ten cuidado ispantoso,” Graciela laughed, please, Jorge, quickly tell to dis pinche Gordo, some poesia so he don’t be so escare of de love.”

            Jorge’s limericks were famous here on early morning Wall Street.

            Jorge quickly checked his flashing red, expired meter--50$ fine--and then the approaching little yellow-blinking Parking Enforcement light; he picked up one of Gordo sausages along with his parking meter change and ran over to charge the red meter, turning back while unwrapping and taking a dripping hot bite, "Eeet going to find you Gordo, ees esneaking up on you--spring, primavera," popping in greasy parking quarters, talking around a mouthful of sausage, then going back and taking up Graciella’s flower vase, he began reciting:

               You hab shut you heart
               Like shut a door,
               To starve de loves inside, not bodder you no more. 
               But down Wall estreet here come de wet new wind of May,
               Blowing you flower’s smell from la Graciela's bouquet.
               Now you love yell out in thee,
               ‘I strong, I break you hearts,
               If you don’t set me efree.’
               Graciella clapped her hands, “Muy maravilloso, gracias Jorge," little tears in her eyes, "your poecia would make the estones fall in love."
                "Take a salchiche gratis," said Gordo. 

 

© Pierrino Mascarino