( I can just hear my father: “HAHAA! Look at that heada hayuh! “)
* This poem was created by my mother, L. Elisabeth [Sweet] Scanzillo, for a Valentine’s Day party. It is the chronicle of her love story. Thank you — RAS
“Twas a night in December, on a railroad train
The steam engine was frozen, we waited in vain…
At the station, in Syracuse (the year, forty-two)
The car packed with soldiers, but not one that I knew!
The stillness was startling: no “clickety-clack!!”
You awoke in your corner, jumped up, and looked back
O’er the snoozing and snoring. “Oh, no! It can’t be!”
“Is that a young chick, all alone, that I see?”
“I’ll just mosey on back there – she looks kind of cute
I need some excitement on this boring route….
“Why, hello there, young lady. How far are you going?”
“To New York”, I replied – as my heart went “boing!”
“Well, isn’t that something? I’m going there, too.
I hope you don’t mind if I sit beside you?”
Your eyes, how they twinkled, your smile was so sweet…
I wanted to answer: “Oh, please, take a seat!”
But, rather than seem too ready and willing
I said: “Aren’t there other seats that need filling?”
“I’ll just sit down, anyway!” you said, with a grin.
(I didn’t even notice the week’s growth on your chin.)
So, all the night long, til the morning at ten
We talked and we laughed, and you sang to me. Then,
we said our “goodbyes” as we got off the train
And, I wondered if ever I’d see you again.
Now, forty-three years have elapsed, and it’s true
Your hair has turned grey, and your whiskers have, too
Your eyes have that twinkle, and your smile is still bright
(Except when you take out your teeth for the night.)
Life with an Italian is never a bore
Although there are times when it is a real chore.
But, our years together have been rather nice
Else, why do you think I married you twice? *
And, now, as I write this, I’m thinking again
If it weren’t for that trip, what my life might have been
For all of these years, since that one, fateful night
Because, I know now, it was “love at first sight” !
by Betty Scanzillo, circa 1987
all rights reserved, on behalf of my mother, whose story is hers alone.
* Mum and Dad were first married in 1944, then divorced two years later for a total of nearly 10 years, after which they remarried each other. Neither one had married anyone else in the meantime. I was the first child born of their reunion.
© Ruth Ann Scanzillo Please, respect the rights of this post. Thank you.