THE GROUNDS

(4.22 No.17. Part of 162 Baseball Poems)

THE GROUNDS

Like a complicated military campaign
We gather sandwiches, coats, mitts, a baseball,
Cheese popcorn, Cracker Jack, bubble water,
Coke, paper towels, sweaters, knit World Series caps,
A parka,
And drive across the Golden Gate Bridge,
Little L. playing his video game as I state,
“This is the most beautiful bridge in the world!”
and I get the response the gathering fog gets;

Walking towards the ballpark,
My arms ache hauling our two bulbous bags
Of clothes and snacks,
While Little L. tosses the baseball against concrete steps,
Snagging the rebound with his mitt;

Outside the stadium on the grass triangle,
I throw the ball as high as my sore arm permits,
He’s a dervish out there, in his orange Giants shirt,
Camping under popups like he’s Brandon Crawford;

After diving catches, he gazes at the passing fans,
to see if they’ve seen him:
Everyone ’cept the Dalia Lama wants to be famous;

I’ve brought the lightest mitt from my collection,
To alleviate the load,
But its leather worn thin from thirty years of pounding,
Permits my hand to sting from Little L.’s hard throws,
Permits my middle and ring finger
To stray against the loose pocket,
To get binged on the tips into numbness;

We munch snacks and sip soda on the green triangle,
The fans flowing past,
The stadium looming,
Bumgarner Vs. Kershaw looming;

This is where poetry serves me,
So,
years and years later,
I recall.

(Giants 3—Dodgers 2)

www.SteveHermanos.com

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