Browse all poems and songs in the 'San Francisco Giants' Category

One Fine Day

by the Village Elliott

For Hank Gowdy

Gee Golly, Boy Howdy,
I just met Hank Gowdy,
Great War hero and World Series star,
Was a Miracle Brave,
Till he joined in first wave,
First pro swap unis, march off to war.
In left field today sit,
With my dad and my mitt,
Can’t imagine a day could be finer,
Till I heard the bat crack,
Heard crowd roar, “Back . . . back . . . back . . .”
I caught home run hit by Ralph Kiner.

I was barely a teen,
Caught betwixt and between,
But grew up to accumulate stuff.
Still my Great Legacy:
Photo: Hank, Bro and me,
One fine day below old Coogan’s Bluff.


The VE explains:  “In July, Dick Volk showed me a photo of himself as a young teenager. It was taken at the Polo Grounds in 1948, and included his older brother, posing with 53-year-old New York Giants coach Hank Gowdy. It was another era. In fact, it is exactly 100 years since Hank led the Boston Braves upset sweep of Connie Mack’s ‘White Elephants’, three years before he became the first Major Leaguer to enlist for WWI. My friend met Hank three years after Hank mustered out a second time, having re-upped as an Army physical education instructor for the duration.”

Never Give Up . . .

by Celeste Johnson

Never give up. When you are down, when you are injured,
When you have been humiliated, never give up.
That is mantra of the Orange and Black. Never give up.
Whether through injury or misfortune,
Patches so rough it feels as if you will never win again,
Never give up. Injuries of all description
Shut out three straight. Can’t buy a hit or an out.
Never give up.  Never give in.  Never truer
Than a late September game named to honor
Two Giants in more than just name.
Exemplar to resilience and heart and honoring the game.
In careers revisited of course but also to honor the men that
They are.  Huddy and Z as they are affectionately
Known. Men amongst men. But life rarely conforms
To the scripts that we write. And baseball has a way of
Writing itself.  Refusing to be confined to our smaller vision.
Baseball finds a way to grow beyond the boundaries
That we set for it.  On a day meant to honor the past
The future steps forward to write its own ending.
Future unknown but for this moment
A kid steps into the light to have the game of his life.
And, allowing redemption is Baseball’s beauty.
Blunder in field leads to promises made;
Promises kept.  Parker steps to the plate in eighth
And in answer to wild and woolly game sends
First pitch over the right field wall and
Into History.  Three home runs in single game.
Seven runs driven in.  First Giant since 1961
When Mays completed the task.
Rookie speechless when informed of scope of his feat.
Baseball renews itself.  In a game meant
To honor the past, the Future steps forward.
With beauty and strength and youthful verve,
The kid rounds the bases and, as a stadium exults,
Huddy stands with a smile as big as life,
Just honored to have witnessed its renewal.
And proud to have been a part of this Orange and Black
Family that never gives up. They would not know how.
It is not in their nature.  A fact and feeling that Z can
Attest to, having been the heart of such resilience in postseason past.
Baseball renews and remembers, honoring both in one day.


“Hope” is the thing with pennants

by Paul Kocak

With apologies to Emily Dickinson

“Hope” is the thing with pennants –
That perches on the heart –
And sings the tune without the words –
And never stops – till done –

And sweetest – in the Yard – is heard –
And sore must be the arm –
The tiny splash of one ball’s arc
Scribing wingèd Victory –

I’ve heard it in the chillest land –
And on the foggiest Cove –
That – never – in Eternity,
Did three-ringed Giants swoon – nor fold.


Paul Kocak is the author of Baseball’s Starry Night: Reliving Major League Baseball’s 2011 Wild Card Night of Shock and Awe, which Doris Kearns Goodwin called “a magical book about a magical night.” He followed this with World Serious: One San Francisco Giants Fan’s 2012 Pilgrimage. He is completing a memoir on his life as a Giants fan.


2015 SF Giants

by Michael Higgins

With apologies to William Carlos Williams

so much depends

a Belt at

frozen by heat

the black


There Was Always Love

by Celeste Johnson


Uncertainty.  There was a time that word would never
Have described the Slight Beloved one.
There was a time that his day meant brightness, joy,
A win when there were so few to be had.
Now there is uncertainty and sadness.
These emotions should never have been connected
To our Slight Beloved.  And he was ours. Is still.
So slight, so small but always a Giant heart.
Little was known but much had been heard
About the skinny kid with the funny last name.
Only that when the ball left his hand it was 97, 98, 99.
Always doubted until pitch was thrown.
The Slight One took the mound,
Twenty-two, looking all of twelve
He stood and then unfurled. A motion poetic,
The ball released. Debut deceptive leaving little hint
Of what brilliance would follow.

There would be love…

The age of Bonds was drawing to a close.
What would follow nobody knew.
Light breaks in ways we never expect.
Joy steals across our hearts in unthought ways.
That May saw joy begin as a slender boyish presence
Climbed the mound. In the dour later years of
The Bonds era this fresh-faced, shy kid
With a joyful smile, balletic grace and 97, 98, 99 started
To become a part of our hearts.
A whirling dervish. Beautiful completeness.
His motion touched our souls and made them sing.
Electric current flowed on days he pitched.

There would be love…

After the dour days of the recent past
He brought life and hope and above all fun to the ballpark.
Electric on the mound; goofy and endearing off it.
The Slight One brought Them back to see.
To see David take on Goliath…
And to watch Goliath flail once, twice, thrice and
Begin that bewildered walk to dugout glancing back
Wondering what exactly had just happened.

There would be love…
There was nascent hope…

At a time when there was little to cheer the Faithful,
There he was, the Slight One, giving reason for cheer.
Often mistaken for a clubbie he matched his slight frame
Against the league’s best hitters. Fastball spotted, a curve
To unbalance, and another 96 to swing straight through.
Bewildered they took their seat on Kruk’s famed pine 265 times,
A San Francisco record.

There was nascent hope…

Word spread.  Crowds grew. The Giants won on
“Happy Lincecum Day.” Joy suffused. Happiness shared.
Hopes grew…at least on the days when the Slight–
Quickly becoming the Beloved–One took the mound.
Poetic motion, Electrifying stuff. Baseball was fun again.
And off the field the one rapidly becoming known
Only as “Timmy” was engaging, goofy and entirely
Unique. Skater caps and a smile that lit up his entire face.
Happy emotion pouring through, letting us know
He was marveling at this as much as the Faithful.
He slipped into our hearts and gave us joy.

There was nascent hope…

There was pride. Pride amid the fan base. The Beloved remained
Humble and a little taken aback at the fervent love from the Faithful.
A heart that wanted to give had to learn when not to.
Never an easy lesson for one so giving,
For a good heart still learning.  At his core he was still shy.
Crowds, even adoring ones, a challenge for one still reticent.

There was nascent hope…

In a year where postseason hope was something other
People had, the Faithful had their Beloved.
He was their hope. In thirty four starts he delivered
Twenty-two team victories, losing only twelve.
Eighteen of those wins were after a loss.
“Happy Lincecum Day” accounted for a
Third of the team’s total victories.

There was nascent hope…

In a season of nothing special,
The Beloved One was weaving something unique.
In the meandering days of a season going nowhere,
Every fifth day held a pinpoint of promise,
To see something special.  To see beauty and
Bewilderment in equal measure.
To see joy and accomplishment contained within
One five-foot-eleven-inch frame; the mound his home.
And we were all invited in to watch.
Game after game that whirling poetic motion
Mesmerized the league’s hitters
And in the end there was no other choice
And it has not been close.
The skinny kid with the funny last name.
The slight one who stole into the hearts of the
Faithful and showed them his joy.
The one who allowed the Faithful to begin hoping again
Had won that which only one other in
The Orange and Black could claim four decades past.
Cy Young was his. Honored so young; just the second to
Wear the Orange and Black. Joy flowing through his smiling
Face and we shared the moment with him.
Heart’s journey begun.  Where it would lead…?

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Copyright 2007 Bardball.