Browse all poems and songs in the 'Lyric' Category


Hanging the Bunting at Wrigley

by Gene Fendt

“At 8-1, the Cubs are off to their best start since 1969”
–news story, April 15, 2016

They’re hanging the bunting at Wrigley
.    a hundred years after the Babe;
so many have waited so long for this day
.     it’s hard to believe what we see.
My childhood knows Santo, Kessinger, Beckert and Banks,
.     the trade of Lou Brock, the umpire’s mistake,

facing Giants and Pirates and Hammering Hank,
.     the line-up of Bench, Morgan, Rose and Perez,
the grace of Clemente before he was dead,
.     the stare-down of Gibson, Bob Veale and Koufax’s crank:
Lou Boudreau on radio made it appear
.     as Athena to Hector, when Achilles was near.

The world is unworthy of childhood faith,
.     the utter incorrigible truth of its love,
its weeping for heroes defeated by fate,
.     its Aprils and Augusts, stolen bases, gold gloves.

All that is over. It’s daytime, there’s ivy,
.     it’s got God’s own green grass,
the bunting is hanging, and so soon you’ll see
.     God himself in his garden, all home at last.

 

Gene Fendt has taught philosophy for 29 years at the University of Nebraska, but grew up in Wisconsin listening to WGN, “radio home of millions throughout mid America.” His poetry most recently has captured the Princemere Poetry Prize (2015) and won the Gemini Magazine national poetry competition.



Lo, the Winter is Past

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

 



The Decision

by Stephen Jones

He faced a lot of batters in a season,
But none of us knew his demon.

C.C. Sabathia made a decision —
Leave the mound for rehabilitation.

It takes a strong man to make this call —
To recognize that life’s more than baseball.

 



The Season is Over, a Sad Refrain

by Susan Petrone

The season is over, a sad refrain.
The calendar would not surrender one more day;
The Indians will not play the last game.

Cleveland done in by too much rain;
Too late to make up at home or away.
The season is over, a sad refrain.

The hopes and dreams of spring became
Autumn’s weary march astray.
The Indians will not play the last game.

Each off-season is the same,
No more dingers, no double plays.
The season is over, a sad refrain.

This season we have cause for blame.
Game 1-6-2 is meaningless, they say.
The Indians will not play the last game.

“It ain’t over till it’s over,” must we now disclaim?
The schedule says there’s one game left to play.
The season is over, a sad refrain.
The Indians will not play the last game.

 

This villanelle first appeared on Susan’s Indians blog, It’s Pronounced Lajaway.

 



Baseball Record

by Steven D. Johnson

Five hundred eleven – the wins of Cy
near three sixty-seven – the bat of Ty
But in baseball heaven, just blink an eye . . .
.    and records will be broken.

Just look at Babe Ruth – seven hundred fourteen
.    To tell you the truth, his home runs were seen
.        to hold a record not passed – thirty-nine years, ‘til alas
Hank Aaron’s bat was woken.

Yet there is a record that will ever stand,
.    but it’s not Ted Williams, and it’s not Stan the Man
.        don’t look to Tris Speaker, don’t bank on Pete Rose
.           for this baseball record every ballplayer knows
.    belongs, yes it does, to another.

It’s not for stolen bases – though Oakland’s a believer
.    nor is it held by aces – like Gibson, Ford or Seaver
No, the sole baseball mark that will hold in every park
.    belongs to father, son, and brother.

The record that won’t break, held through highs and heartache,
is going seven-for-seven, every baseball season week
.    since 1911 – now that is quite a feat!
It’s keeping baseball alive since 1925.
It’s zero games missed since 1886.
It’s giving ballplayers a reason
.    to thrive in baseball season.

Yes, the only baseball record
.    that will maintain its stand
.        belongs to the beloved,
.            committed baseball fans!

 

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Copyright 2007 Bardball.