Twas the day after Christmas and over the field,
the snow covered skins glistened and gleamed.
The snow covered mound, alone and just one,
like a mountain of sprinkles reflecting the sun.
The drifts found their way into dugouts and more,
across the benches, the steps and the floors.
The park seems so quiet, so solemn, at peace,
where once joy and sadness both sharing for space.
Now sleeping were grass and resting was clay,
the baselines of lime and the house shaped home plate.
Now regardless of how long, whatever it takes,
this is our home, our honorable place.
For soon it’ll be gone, the cold and the winds,
gone will be snow, and the shivers it brings.
Soon we’ll put on our spikes and our snaps,
and we’ll lookout our dugout, and a tug on our caps.
We’ll anxiously wait for the umpire’s call,
“alright gentleman — let’s play some ball”.
But until that time, I quietly sit,
outside of the park, and look through a slit.
A chainlink fence that offers a glimpse,
of the place I’ve called home, I fondly do miss.
The memories coaches and players would all come alive,
when I thought I’d live forever, but how fast it went by.
My fingers grab hold of the holes in the fence,
and I wish I was back, wishing in vain for just one more chance.
To be with the sounds, the smells and cheers,
to hear the crowds boo, hollow and jeer.
And always the ground rules would be so polite,
as we discussed the game and made the universe right.
We’d shake all the hands, and a tip of our caps,
and a silent expression that said,” well, that’s that!”
The umpires seemed so friendly, so patient, like chums,
but I knew in short order, I’d be call-em bums!
In the dugout there is a man of stature and grace,
years of experience is worn on his face.
Our leader, our Skipper is a knowledgeable man,
as he paces our dugout with roster in hand.
And I’ll take my place, as I always do,
away from the dugout, away from one’s view.
I’ll head to the pen where there on a bench,
a rotation of pitchers that Olympus has sent.
Each man is sturdy, each man is lean,
each will be tested using the seams.
How fortunate am I to hold in my heart,
the memories of this game, this wonderful park.
The men that I’ve known, their families I’ve met,
All the boys right of passage that soon became men.
Like the quiet moments, alone with a loss,
A young man alone, bearing it all.
“It’s the nature of the game, son”, I’d try to sway …
to a young man’s agony that happen that day.
And then there’s the win’s, with all the home runs,
all but forgotten with the new rising sun.
For this is a passion that requires respect,
not just a game, not to neglect.
For this is baseball, a life of its own, of heros and villains,
of dragons and gnomes,
of magical wizards and crafty ole trolls.
And balancing this all, in his uniform blue,
with wisdom and insight will a spell book or two,
is the ultimate wizard, ordained by the commish,
who wears his armor and stands guard at the dish.
As my mind did wondered, and memories of past,
a gently voice beckons, over my back.
“Are you ready dear?”, she says with a smile,
the smile that allowed me live in the past, just for a while.
For briefly I was the coach of my youth,
the man whose advice the players would use.
“I’ll be back”, I quietly thought, I’ll be back in my heart to see it again.
I’ll sit somewhere different, but I won’t wear the clothes,
of yesterday’s game - they don’t fit me no more.
But I do need it so, this game that we’re in,
it’s part of fiber, my blood and my skin.
My partner in life for these many years,
has given me a gift that has brought me to tears.
She’s allowed me one more visit to the place of my youth,
the place that I shared with only a few.
How can a game be so intertwined,
with the every day life of her’s and mine?
The answer is simple, straight forward at that.
It’s the people that we’ve met - and that’s a fact.
Good hearted people, with feelings and fun,
hoping for just one more season of sun.
Live this game, and live it at best,
you’re quality of life - it’s as good as it gets!