Monday, May 14, 2012

Pop Up

Photo:  Backstop fence.  David Graham

Another poem today by Brent Goodman.

Pop Up 

My favorite part of gym class was called “Hitting the showers.”
Sports a foreign country with no kiosk to exchange
currency. Ask me to run defense? Scoop a grounder?
Catch net? I got nothing. Or a clenched jaw and upturned
eyes. But for the Brewers, I somehow fell in love with the high fly,
sun-squinting outstretched arm, lead-to-leather thwack and recoil.
So I practiced for hours in my yard launching fastballs into the sun,
steading my horse stance beneath each cannonball descent scooping
catch after stunning catch for my own brain-sized stadium. The one
game I didn’t bench (I lettered in Jazz Ensemble), I stood
center field panicking a white sphere to slingshot from the sky but
I was ready. I was steady. Not like the time practicing when
fastball grazed glove, shattering my nose, leaning over to cupped hands
suddenly brimming with blood. I don’t like seeing so much of myself
outside myself. Which is how I feel at the crack of every bat,
something speeding my direction so fast it’s already arrived
yet hasn’t departed, because the physics of this story is quantum
to my understanding of how I might still love my father. So open
your lefty glove and plant your feet - I straight-armed the pop-up, I
ended the inning. Back on the bench, timed-out with the ball still
lost in my glove, teammates searching the field, such sadness
in their foreheads as I watched them adjust  their elastic crotches.

--Brent Goodman

No comments:

Post a Comment