Browse all poems and songs in the 'The Game Itself' Category


Baseball Is . . .

by Stephen Jones

A contradiction—

of lazy clouds which
like counted sheep
unroll slowly overhead,
and did-you-see-that plays,
routinely made, which
flicker like lightning
beneath the skin.

Baseball was—and is—
born slow,
with metaphors for a head,
but when least expected,
it will rage—a storm.

 



That Gallant Pirate Crew

by James Francis Burke

From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, October 16, 1925, when the Pirates vanquished the Senators after being down 3-1 in the World Series.

Were it not for Prohibition,
Which has made the country dry,
I’d fill a wine glass brimming
And lift it toward the sky
And drink a royal bumper —
In fact, I’d make it two —
To good old Bill McKechnie
And his gallant Pirate crew.

But wine is gone forever —
At least, that’s what I hear,
And hence a thirsty poet
Can only stand and cheer
For those whose names are written
‘Mid the skies eternal blue:
The names of Barney Dreyfus
And his gallant Pirate crew.

The Capital’s in mourning,
But the nation’s all arrayed
In the colors of the rainbow
Whose bright hues never fade.
For the Buccaneers are victors —
One can hardly think it’s true —
So here’s to Bill and Barney
And their gallant Pirate crew.

The dear old slow Potomac’s
Filled with tears from shore to shore;
The stately public buildings
Have crepe on every door;
While diplomats and statesmen
Have nothing left to do
But envy good old Pittsburgh
And her gallant Pirate crew.

But let’s be fair, my comrades,
And give the “Nats” their due:
They played the game like heroes,
Like sportsmen good and true.
And here’s a fan’s confession,
A tip twixt me and you:
It was not summer picnic
For our gallant Pirate crew.

 



All-Star Clerihews, Part II

Aaron Judge
Wants to leave a ball-shaped smudge
On the bleacher seats
Of every ballpark he meets.

Jose Altuve
Is feeling real groovy
Slulrping down shaved ice
And driving around like “Miami Vice”.

Chris Sale
Drinks a pail
Of prune juice before each start–
That face is him holding in every fart.

Zack Cozart
Isn’t much for art.
He thinks that big thing by Red Grooms
Indicates use of ‘shrooms.

 



Of All the Double Plays

by Raphael Badagliacca

Swing and a miss
Snap and a hiss
Strike em out
Throw em out
Wins the day
Without a doubt

 



Ongoing Failure

By jessicaj

Baseball is a game of failure
I hear people say this daily
Last Friday
I was talking to a guy
About the road to the Final Four
He wants more ESPN
More college hoops
More NHL, NFL, and MLS
At first I’m nodding along
Then I started envisioning
An invisible painting
Hanging before me
A blend of 90% fescue
With freshly raked dirt
Demarcating the infield
Suddenly my mouth waters
I can taste popcorn salt
Smell yeasty beer
Hear drunks arguing
While another batter
Gets punched out
Meanwhile I’m thinking
This isn’t productive
I’m just sitting there
Growing older
Having spent my money
On a long drive and
Expensive parking
But for a few hours
I’ve been transported
Transformed, I’ve escaped
My burdens at work and home
Have accumulated
The ballpark is grimy
Even the new ones
Are gray slabs of concrete
Baseball is a business
Chewing up players
Sucking them dry
A capitalist enterprise
Time is so precious
Why would I waste it
Contemplating the futility
Of a rainy day at the ballpark
When I could be
Getting ahead in life?
But I have a secret:
I know why
The caged batter
Swings

 

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