By R.J. Lesch
With two men out, Glen Perkins turned to look
toward the third base stands, and then he smiled.
The local boy, as in a storybook,
or sandlot fantasies of any child,
could hear the Minnesota crowd. And they
were chanting out his name, their joy undamped
as he closed out the All Star Game. They say
the Nordic folk don’t often get so amped.
And closers should be ice and stone, you see.
But out there on the diamond, who could blame
A boy who once hit baseballs off a tee
For grinning big and wide? But all the same,
the closer and the catcher, not done yet,
went back to work, with one more out to get.
by R.J. Lesch
Rivera’s winding up his farewell tour.
The Rockies’ Helton takes his final bow.
Guerrero leaves the players’ ranks one fewer,
and Pettitte says the time to quit is now.
Who else will be upon the Hall of Fame’s
induction ballot only five years hence?
We’ll cheer them while they play their final games,
and then the tearing down part will commence.
Which candidates are worthy of a plaque?
To get your player through those hallowed doors,
You have to stab the others in the back,
As fewer votes for them mean more for yours.
“Your player’s glove was not so good,” I’ll say.
And you’ll reply my candidate struck out
too often in the clutch. And, by the way,
his value came from a syringe, no doubt.
It’s sad to drag good players through the dust,
but votes are scarce. So, Cooperstown AND bust!
by Pseud à Nîmes
New York, London, Paris, Munich
Everybody talk about, mmm….
Pop music, aye, and news and sport
But to Bardball blast, we must retort
From the bleachers, and godly seats
Loving testimonies – and testy tweets
Au contraire, in Europe there is but little
Interest – like our economy, entirely brittle
In our excitement, we do refrain
From all small talk of one Ferris Fain
Unknown to us, across the Golden Pond
In our view, his sport just a frond
Of the nascent game we called rounders
Those damn Yankees – cads and bounders!
by Ember Nickel
Was that Tony La Russa after all?
The glasses look right. I don’t know the eyes.
Was that a slider? Changeup? Or curveball?
Perhaps this would be a good place for wise
They keep silent, cutaway to the same
Fan–wedding ring, hair dyed, breath quick to bate–
That they have been showing throughout the game.
Give me the details that I could not hear;
The red glove, the necklace striped blue and white.
We all are fans and we can all guess fear,
We know what is at stake on such a night.
And beyond night, I’ll try myself to share
The game with others–it’s morning out there.
Ember Nickel makes sport with the English language on her blog, Lipogram! Scorecard!
by Estrid Balslev
I felt: A bee was swarming in my bonnet!
A voice said, “You’re a bard, so you must write
A real poem, full of spunk and bite.
In other words, you have to write a sonnet.”
“And what about?” I asked the eerie voice.
“On baseball,” was his firm and clear reply.
“Excuse me that I have to ask you why,”
I answered, but he said I had no choice.
“Of baseball I know less than does my cat,”
I said to him. “Come, let us have a chat
On other things that I might write about.”
He told me I had better close my snout
And just get going. Curse him! All the same,
I’m sure that baseball is a splendid game.
Estrid Balslev is a poet and performance artist from Denmark.