I play the World Series with marbles
on our vine-laced Persian carpet:
its palaces are bases,
its bowers become dugouts
where my heroes’ cards wait
for their manager’s hand.
I play both sides, home and away,
hitter and fielder—as always
no one on my team but me.
Adult shapes, fat and crooked,
bald and creased or worn thin,
edge around me,
pass through the house smiling
down as if to say dear child
you know nothing outside
your magic carpet, which
one day you’ll find is only a rug
that will take you no place at all.
But I have just jumped
an impossible height, caught
Roger Maris’ hot line drive to right
and brought it back over the fence.
The roar of the crowd
puts any doubt to rest:
in that moment I am blessed
and that moment is all there is.
©2008, 2018 by Dan Liberthson
from my book The Pitch is on the Way: Poems About Baseball and Life
see more at http://www.liberthson.com