“Arrangement in Black and White”

words and music and stories

Dorothy Parker

“Arrangement in Black and White”

by Dorothy Parker (1927)

(abridged)

The woman with the pink velvet poppies twined round the assisted gold of her hair traversed the crowded room at an interesting gait combining a skip with a sidle, and clutched the lean arm of her host.
“Now I got you!” she said. “Now you can’t get away!”
“Why, hello,” said her host. “Well. How are you?”
“Oh, I’m finely,” she said. “Just simply finely. Listen. I want you to do me the most terrible favor. Will you? Will you please? Pretty please?”
“What is it?” said her host.
“Listen,” she said. “I want to meet Walter Williams. Honestly, I’m just simply crazy about that man. Oh, when he sings! When he sings those spirituals! Well, I said to Burton, ‘It’s a good thing for you Walter Williams is colored,’ I said, ‘or you’d have lots of reason to be…

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