50 years ago now

Truman Capote gave the best party ever

The Black and White Ball was

Credited, I say, with breaking the old order

He invited everybody

And Everybody came

Moguls and novelists

Divas and divines

The inspiring and the almost expired

Urbans and provincials in the same clutch

Capote married Art and Politics and Money

Or at least forced them to fuck

In one large room decorated with nothing

But candles and balloons; he

Served spaghetti and chicken hash at midnite

Published his invitation list in The New York Times

Can you imagine it?

Attending his loving swans

Dancing with Lauren Bacall

His red lips, almost! even with her famous breasts

Of course there were not many people of color feted

Just Gordon Parks and Harry Belafonte and the Ellisons: Ralph and Fanny

Who called themselves “the black of the Black and White Ball”

I’m sure a few were passing too; Art has always

Participated in masquerade and knows the rules

Better than anybody

So what old order did they break?

Capote the outsider the iconoclast comic but

Somehow malevolent figure of surprise-who

Could manufacture charm

But had no loyalties

Do you know he inculcated a grande vision

Of the outside world in his granny’s closeted kitchen?

That he started planning this party

Before he entered puberty

Always a little darling manipulator

With sharp dolls teeth


50 years ago, it was.

Did I say that?

How old were you, approximately 0?

I was 12, dreaming of your dark eyes

Your firm refusal

Your specific kiss


4 thoughts on “The Best Party Ever

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