I'm off to watch the Cubs play some baseball at spring training next week. I am looking forward to some sunshine and some Ronnie Woo-Woo (Go Cubs, Go). This poem is for all the baseball fans out there who can smell spring a mile away! Enjoy.
You hold the bat at eye-level,
knees bent, get down to meet the ball,
preparing to give yourself up
for the common good.
Your bat is an extension of the body,
the idea being to catch the ball
with all you have.
Somebody is depending on you
to move him along, a vulnerable friend,
the kind of guy who wonders in sweat
WHAT AM I DOING HERE.
A limbo of wind comes off the mound,
nothing but a tiny marble
small enough for a navel.
Squared, you have given yourself away,
each rotation of the ball saying
NO PLACE TO HIDE
You can’t think about it,
about popping it up.
Suddenly, it’s on the ground, he’s safe,
you’re out, he’s scoring position,
you’re on the bench, you’ve never left it up
to the next guy, the reader.