The following was based upon a true story which took place in 1963. The music playing inside my mind is the sound of a lone, jazzy trumpet. Hopefully, as a reader, you will HEAR it as well. lmr
Back then, I was just a kid. Between him and my mother, I didn’t know of their marital politics, and I could not decipher the strange, algebraic equation that formed my parents’ private life. And so, in those first five years, I’d no real or touchable memory of a life with my father, at least, not in the physical sense. And then there came that moment, when a boy sees, digests, and processes it all, and it’s then that he falls in love with his father.
I was six. I vividly remember it. He was stepping off the train from Cleveland, carrying a small brown reptilian suitcase and an elongated one that held his prized trumpet. He appeared to be very big to my small eyes. He was statuesque and more handsome than all those shiny-men emoting from our small, black and white TV set. This was my daddy, my Pops, damn it—looking like no one else I’d ever seen! It was as if he were from another planet, man… a planet called Cool!
There was a certain quality, a magical sheen to his rich copper skin, and it seemed a corona glowed all around him. He moved in the slowest motion towards us. Everyone else around him was rushing swiftly to those places strangers go, and yet, he, he was gliding. I’d never seen a colored man glide before.
Yes, I was falling in love with my father; falling in love with a flowing vision kissed by a corona of light. He appeared to represent some extension of myself. And thus, my love affair began with a revelation in a natty-blue suit.
His love for me was always an enigma, shaded under a sly fedora.