Poor Calvin. It’s hard to enjoy being a part of something when you have no understanding of what’s going on.
Chicago Colts (Cubs) pitcher Dave Wright won the only game of his major league career on September 28, 1897 (out of two total pitching appearances). The twenty-one-year-old gave up 14 runs on 17 hits, yet he still managed to eek out a 15-14 victory over the Pirates.
When you come to a fork in the road, take it.
This piece was published in the June 1988 issue of Poetry. I like the ephemeral feel of this piece. The use of the words “dream” and “memory” are so indicative and appropriate.
It took time to study who was missing
from the dream ball club that paraded
through the dark in uniforms and numbers
holding up posters of the lost teammate
as if campaigning for their man.
I had to walk the dream railroad track again
where my son followed me at first, then took
the lead, balanced, leaped forward over the ties,
And to sit with the inquisitor who wore
my dachshund around his neck like a precious
fur with lacquered eyes.
I had to listen then to memory,
your fastball, your grand slams out of the park.
And go back to the bleachers at Yankee Stadium
where you took me at 7 though I was not the son
whose hear, that sly courser, unseated him.
He was the one you saved your prize for,
the baseball Babe Ruth signed.
At the game you tried to show me what you saw
but I was gabbing about something else:
another hot dog, how many more minutes.
It took time, Father, to see
you swinging, connecting.
I’d argue that maybe the kid was doing too good of a job keeping his eye on the ball.
The Brooklyn Superbas established a new franchise record for runs scored in a game on September 23, 1901. In a game played at League Park in Cincinnati, Brooklyn scored 11 times in the fifth inning, blowing out the Reds, 25-6.
Baseball is 50% from the neck up.