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Sandlot Baseball – A Poem

March 17, 2010

Where there is baseball, there is poetry. Here’s a poem I wrote 15 years ago for Spitball – The Literary Baseball Magazine, 1995, No 49. I’ve made a few revisions:


Swinglesby was the neighborhood miscreant,

adept at filching smokes from the corner variety

and renowned for lifting fungo bats

from Coach Crook’s batting rack.

Only Swinglesby dared cancel gym class

at the elementary, pinning counterfeit notices

on the Storage Room door –

the coach locked inside, pep-talking

to towels in off-color tones.

Swinglesby made everyone uneasy,

especially second-graders. At recess,

he rounded  up strays from the hop-scotch

and made them smoke his Lucky Strikes,

laughing as they puffed themselves dragon green.

Swinglesby would pop up almost anywhere,

usually on diamonds in need of a mow,

cutting clouds with hacks from his fungo,

and chipping the crystal skyline,

baseballs whittling the wind.

And once, in the moonlight,

so many seasons ago, a few of us

cast wishes from The Wall in left,

when we caught Swinglesby

shooting stars with a stick.

Every so often, during moonlit

summer eves, when Orion coughs

and the Milky Way picks locks,

there’s Swinglesby, standing in the sandlot,

fungo in hand, charming constellations,

and pickpocketing the moon…

From → Uncategorized

  1. My goodness, Rich. You’ve painted quite a picture on this special St. Pattie’s Day, my friend.

    • Thanks – I bet you had a few characters lurking between the bases back in the sandlot ages. I know we had a few on the Once Moore softball team…

  2. Okay…this was…just…wonderful…such a joy to read…LOVED…IT!…sorry to shout…but I wanted you to hear me!

    • Thanks for the kind words. Just checked out your blog and am very impressed with your poem entitled, Illusion.

  3. clever writing.
    i really enjoyed it

  4. Hey Rich, Nice work, man. I’ll be directing traffic to your blog. You have heart, as a baseball fan should. Cheers, Bill

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