Fiction   Essays   Poetry  The Ten On Baseball Chapbooks In Memory

Thomas Feeny

Ticket on down

right before spring cuts
salvation is a ball slashed
sharply toward third base
streak on in, knock it down
plastic man you send two
bobbing yo-yos home to mama

and think of buying furniture
till the next sunburnt afternoon
when, on a dust-blown infield
packed like clay, some
dumb pitcher's bunt topped
juicy, slow
suddenly picks up spin, jumps
prayerful leather, skids, rolls
drifts to rest
in short left field

chomping on leaf, you
squirt a jawful toward the stands
hunt your own place to die

Summer Slump

Drenched with sweat
he sits alone in the dugout
finger in his ear
springtime promise now
hefting a bat
badly out of whack

gnawing chaw, hocking
frustration at the moon
he sits there, replaying
the whole nine innings
0 for five
totally bamboozled

No Extra Innings

(After going hitless in six at-bats for the Roanoke Rapids Water Fowl-- Class D ball.)

The whole night long
you chase redemption in
one sweet race
atop a phantom baseball diamond
Tattered t-shirt, cap
and cut-offs, sweat smearing
your grizzled chin,
neath the glare of lights
you pirouette down paths
of powdered gold

Crowds cheer
Vendors run out of beer
life is lush, you're on a roll
till cruising around third
you stumble, trip, suck
sand, end up
in a log-jam jamming home

Where their demon catcher's
got your number. Zapped, sacked,
you're blown away. Naw, no extra innings.
Game over, you wake up sopping wet

©2007 by Thomas Feeny

Thomas Feeny teaches Italian and Spanish literature at North Carolina State University. His poetry has appeared in magazines such as The Cape Rock, Puerto Del Sol, and Hiram Poetry Review.

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