Baseball of the Mind

April 06, 1992|By William Amelia

A field of green edged in white stripes

that diverge to points

beyond the boundary,

In the foreground,

a diamond in a square

set in a band of smooth dark ocher,

place of the mind,

a playerless stage,

for all of the game's conventions,

Predetermined, unfolding

on the breeze,

before play begins.

Three and two pitches, stolen bases,

catches at the wall, double plays,

bunts and low line drives,

With just a bat and a five ounce ball

of wound string

wrapped in bleached horsehide.

Sinclair Lewis thought baseball to be

''of eternal importance,

like the Republican Party.''

An anonymous poet in 1744 said more:

''The ball once struck off,

Away flies the boy,

to the next destined post,

) and then home with joy.''


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