Browse all poems and songs in the 'Lyric' Category


by Stephen Jones

The summer’s done, the season’s done,
And you’ve been on a very long journey.
The rising road no longer winds so much, and
On both sides, the once-lush fields are empty.
Autumn flickers like a golden fish.
You drive between here and tomorrow.

.                                                  And

It’s no surprise, that you pass roadside stands
Selling end-of-season distractions.
You see peach baskets full of analytics
(For wintering over, like last year’s apples),
Crates clearly marked Hustle and Muscle,
(But with dates that have now expired),
Stacks — like cords of wood — of guaranteed
Live arms (these also root-cellar bound),
Boxes and boxes of spins and grips, and
Canning jars of freshly made good stuff.

.                                                  And

Up ahead, on the road’s gravel shoulder,
Just before the winter turn,
Fired managers hold out their thumbs.

.                                                  Meanwhile,

A dusty red pickup honks, then passes you.
It’s full of young talent, like day workers, and
Heads back to the farm.


Special Interest Fan

by Raphael Badagliacci

I like the Dodgers.
I like the Astros.
I like the winding,
Treacherous way
Every bit of every game
I root for certain earthly aspects
That give a glimpse of heaven:
My love seen through the upstairs windows
And yet another Game Seven.


What’s Going On? (Game 4–Yankees 7, Indians 3)

by Stephen Jones

Luis Severino
Certainly had his mojo,
And Kahnle shut the door.

But what are the chances
That Dellin Betances
Gets back to dominance?

Is it mechanical,
Or something that’s mental,
Which has swayed his confidence?

All of a quick-sudden
The heat that he’s servin’
Is looking tenuous, at best.

Or, as one fan did say:
“His pitches may not get over the plate,
But at least he struck out a fence.”


TV and the Twilight (Strike) Zone

by Stephen Jones

I watched in disbelief.
I can’t get no relief –
From an umpire whose eyesight
Is worse than a badger’s.

Here quoth the baseball,
Its wings made of leather:
“Balls are strikes and
Strikes are balls. Evermore.”

It was then, in my chair,
That I yawned tired air.
I dropped the remote,
And the room did darken . . .

.     And a carny voice did harken:
.     “Hur-ray! Hur-ray!
.     An instant baseball fan solution –
.     Coming soon, to your television.

.     “Fans – are you tired of bad calls?
.     Does the umpire need a vision check?
.     Do you think the strike zone
.     Moves around too much?

.     “Well then, have no fear –
.     The solution, it’s right here.
.     It’s called ‘Auto-Strike’ –
.     The new e-lec-tronic game in town.

.     “So, say goodbye to tradition
.     And the curse of bad vision.
.     ‘Auto-Strike’ will cure
.     Each and every umpire call!”

.     (Disclaimer: The Salem’s Lot Nine
.     Will now miss its boo-and-hiss time
.     And the ever-popular fan favorite –
.     Burning umpires at the stake.)

Here quoth the baseball,
Its wings made of leather:
“Balls are strikes and
Strikes are balls. Evermore.”

I shifted in my chair,
Of the game unaware,
And continued my reverie
Of balls, strikes . . . and late-night TV.

.      Laughter came from off-screen,
.     From an audience of the dream,
.     And there was a smirking host
.     Who thought he was being clever:

.     “Just to be clear . . . the ball is scanned,
.     Just like cereal or a country ham
.     Off a bar code at a grocery store?
.     And what would happen then,

.     “If it didn’t correctly scan in?
.     This is baseball, not a market,
.     And you just can’t call out:
.     ‘Hey . . . price check, aisle four.’”

Here quoth the baseball,
Its wings made of leather:
“Balls are strikes and
Strikes are balls. Evermore.”

It was almost 2:00 am when I awoke.
An infomercial was spewing smoke
About saving me time and money . . .
And dreams replacing reality.

.     “Yessir, yessir . . . get it now, get it here.
.     From those folks who brought you
.     ‘The Pocket Baseball’ and ‘One-Pitch Wonder’,
.     And the ever-popular ‘One That Got Away’.”

Even as I arose and shook my head
And stumbled off to bed,
The sonorous voice behind me said:

“Balls are strikes and
Strikes are balls. Evermore.”


Lo, the Winter is Past

Each year, before the first spring training game, the late Tigers broadcaster Ernie Harwell would read these verses from the Song of Solomon (2:11-12).


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Copyright 2007 Bardball.