The Latin Deli: Prose and Poetry

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Jacob Quintero
"The Latin Deli"
1. In, “American History”, there is a boy Deli: An Ars Poetica’, by Judith Ortiz Cofer I. who moves into the house next to El Building named Eugene. Eugene is a tall blond boy who wears glasses. Eugene was smart because he “was in honors classes for all his subjects.” Eugene doesn’t seem to have much interaction with girls because he blushed deeply when Elena first went up to him. However, by walking home with Elena, Eugene finds a way to make her have a crush on him and causes her to change the way she thinks for him. Eugene and his family had moved to Paterson from Georgia, which was the reason he had an accent. Eugene must have been from a family that didn’t like to associate with people of different skin tones because of how his mother reacted when Elena went to go study at his house. In “The Witch’s Husband,” Abuela is an old Puerto Rican woman who has some heart problems. Abuela is also very stubborn since she insists on taking care of the old man herself, and says she’s good when they tell her that she might die in her sleep. Abuela has five children of her own and took in many foster children. When people had hard times they would stay at Abuela’s house. Abuela is very proud of everything she does, whether it’s raising children or taking care of her garden. Abuela is old, but wise since she knows all the remedies for sickness and also old tales of witches. The stories that Abuela tells kind of relates to her when she went off to New York, because she wanted to leave home. Abuela again shows the kindness of her heart when she says, “Because I love him and I missed my children.” It is ironic that Abuela has heart problems because it seems like she has so much heart and care for people around her. In “Letter from a Caribbean Island,” Marina talks of an old man who lived in the cabin next to hers. He was a representation of dedication since “every night after the beach cleared of people, he would sit under the lamppost.” He did this because he wanted to see a dolphin. The old man would also make clay figurines out of the drawings he drew. One day, his dedication finally paid off and he saw dolphins swimming. His excitement and happiness affected Marina and made her unexpectedly cry and run after him. He ends up going with the dolphins and getting taken away with them. He gave Marina hope and belief that good things will come. El Arabe was a character in the story “Not for Sale.” He sold to women linens and went around to doors of El Building and would tell stories to his customers. El Arabe is a man of determination because “when he saw that one of us had lost the thread of the story, he would begin again, sometimes at the beginning.” He is a good storyteller because the girl “fell under the spell of his words as he described a heroic vision of a handsome man who rode thoroughbreds over a golden desert.” He is trying to make his son seem pleasant to the girl because he wanted her to marry him. Inocencia was a character in “Corazon’s Café.” Inocencia was a loyal man with a wife and two kids. Inocencia first came about when he was just squatting in front of the door as if he was observing what was going on. Without words, showing Inocencia to be a man that keeps to himself, Inocencia went over to Manuel and started to help him. He respects women when “he was looking down at the floor and not at her during the introduction.” He is a man of hard work because he had walked and hitch hiked from Peru to Mexico and then to the United States. He is also a man of friendship and love since Manuel felt like he was like a son. After Manuel died, Inocencia changed his way and spoke to Corazon directly as if she was his new boss. 2. In “Orar: To Pray” the mother is a traditional woman who doesn’t want her husband to leave. “After the hissed, please denunciations.” She takes lessons she had learned from her mother and applies them to her situation now showing her respect for prayer and her...
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