On the other side of the world
it don’t mean nothin’—
the slow tedium of the pitcher
holding the ball in both hands
rubbing it as if it were a talisman
that could save his life,
and if the charm didn’t work
to lose it, just another game lost
in the box scores, a minor loss
buried in history; and the batter
tries to stay alive waiting for that one pitch
knowing there’s another one out there
that has his number on it.Men lose their gods at a time like this:

You can read the rest of this poem on the WLA Journal website, along with ‘Something Like a War’, ‘Playing Baseball in the Army: Company Picnic, 1967’ and ‘Behind the Plate’.