Runner on Third

Filed in Gather Writing Essential by on August 8, 2010 0 Comments

 

They needed no preamble,

no anthem,

before they were off again.

The hack of bat and ball,

as if sound had just been created

for the first time in Baltimore.

Two girls more excited by the cheers

than anything else,

save for the hot dogs and bases loaded,

when you explained what that meant.

When they tired of the game,

of the peanuts mixed with broken shells

under their feet,

of the lemonade turned sticky and warm,

they squeezed closer to you,

pulling your arms across their shoulders,

and napped at the seventh-inning stretch.


Older,

their lives were a series of first-ons,

bases loaded, doubles, triples,

and the final push past third—

one, a Nike in Nikes,

the other slower, yet surer of the path,

running the long crooked lines

away from home.


Your weakened body —

now, a runner on third — you called plays

from where you sat on the bleachers,

squinting over the field to

gauge distances from here to there,

tracing the bases and brilliant lines of light,

waiting for blue pinstripes of dusk

and the what that comes after.


 

About the Author ()

Interested in music, poetry/writing, art, photography, science, politics, and maintaining equilibrium and passionate engagement in life.

Leave a Reply