• Neon Mariposa Magazine

il caffé by Susan Marie

Updated: May 8, 2019

Her name was Juliana.

I met her in a coffeehouse ducking out of icy New York rainfall. I did not notice her at first.  She is that type of woman, alone, in a dark corner, mysterious. I did not plan to stay long, wished to grab a cappuccino and get back to my flat to relax.

I made the last payment on my Jeep and desperately needed to slip out of my work clothes.

Credit card in hand, I walked over to Zeke, owner of the café, to inquire about part time job

openings as a barista.

That is when Juliana noticed me. 

All it took was a slight turn of my head, our eyes caught, and I was blinded.  Everything around us faded into background. The only sound, my blood, pumping, sending oxygen to my cheeks, rising, as apples in October.

She motioned to me and I nodded. Slinging my leather backpack on one shoulder, I held my

books under the other arm, juggling my coffee.  She stood to help me, smiling as she

approached.  She had the softest brown eyes I ever saw.  

I could stare into them forever and that evening, I did. 

She spoke, introducing herself.  I studied each strand of her mane, that of a thoroughbred, wild and shining.  It was just past shoulder length, straight and black and she kept waving it from in front of her eyes. 

She was painfully adorable.

Juliana asked if I had any plans for the evening. Shaking my head that I did not, she took my

hand, leading me out of the café. 

Opening the passenger door for her, she slid into the Jeep I now owned. I knew a drive up Route 5 along Lake Erie would be a reprieve from the dankness of this day.

She popped a CD in the player and sang as I drove. Tilting my chin upward, I glanced towards her out of the corner of my eye.  No words needed to be spoken.  We both recognized that stare.       

I was falling in love with a complete stranger.

Susan Marie was born in Buffalo. For 20 plus years, she worked in the medical, technical, and artistic fields while writing poetry and prose. Currently, she is a Clinical Mental Health Counselor. Her two volumes of poetry are available on Amazon. over. Ms. Marie is also a spoken word poet.

Book publishing credits include: "knots" [volume of poetry/prose] and "Shahada" [volume of poetry] and anthologies such as: "Trees of Surprise" "Poems of Inspiration and Faith" "Reflections on the Web" - "Nickel City Nights" - "Bare Bones Vol. 2" - "A Celebration of Western New York Poets: Wheels of Transformation" - "The Experience of Living & Dying Poetry Collection" - "Voices from the Herd' - "The Khaoa Musica Tarot" - "Three Line Poetry Issues #34 & #39 -"My Name is Nobody: Down in the Dirt" - "Darker Than Fiction" and "Reinvented Success: 26 Authors Share The Little Things That Matter So You Can Help Yourself Master Confidence, Motivation, and Success."

Poetry Magazine Publications include: "Nomad Magazine" - "Poet Tree Magazine" - "Fiction365" - "beatdog" - "Harlem World NYC" - "American Tolkien Society Vol. II. III. IV, Minis Tirith Evening Star" - "Pulitzer Center for Crisis Reporting" - "Global Voices/Rising Voices" - "Poems and Poetry" - "Rebelle Society"- "kritya" -"The Empathy Library" - "Black Elephant" - "Helen: A Literary Magazine" - "Spillwords", "Poetry Inspired" and "South Florida Poetry Journal."

Susan's writing has been translated to Dari, Spanish, Croatian and Hindi. In 2007, she was invited to The Kritya International Poetry Festival in Chandigarh, India by Dr. Rati Saxena.


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