Spitball magazine is celebrating the 100th anniversary of the black sox scandal. They’re looking for submissions. According to their home page, they’re accepting poems, short stories, non fiction, just about anything so i thought i’d pass it on in case anyone was interested. Click the link and it will take you there or maybe I didn’t need to explain that; maybe it was evident? SPITBALL
the old barber shop,
with a red, white and blue twirl outside and
a chair i had never seen before inside.
i was too small so the barber laid a board across the arm wrests to raise me up.
there was a mirror in front of me.
there was a mirror behind me.
i could see myself repeating for infinity.
the barber gave me a bazooka joe bubble gum when he was done cutting.
the wind felt right as I walked away.
i don’t look at the mirror much anymore.
it reminds me too much,
of what’s been lost,
baseball’s four divisions
and before that,
the two leagues of my grandpa’s time
all spring summer season long they played for
only one winner per league,
one playoff called the World Series,
all those games for nothing i love that,
no wild cards,
no inter league play,
no money sponsors commercial,
only strange named relievers and hot dog wrappers.
i like the smell of a vagabond.
i like the will of a can collector.
i like the runaway train determination of anyone doing what they love to do.
i cut my own hair these days.
a deck of playing cards is scattered about my route to work
just like it was before the snow fell frozen,
i look up instead.
a satellite dish and a crow share a roof top.
makes me long for the order of a baseball diamond,
i go there,
but there are only partially underground dugouts,
3 feet underground dugouts,
a used condom and candy bar wrappers in the corner,
but it’s a kid’s crumpled up homework assignment that saddens me the most.
i think about cancer, name calling, depression, stubbed toes and all sorts of woes, but then i think about those cups we used as kids, the ones we connected with strings and communicated with one another and then i think about walkie-talkies and dugout phones and bullpen phones and a manager summoning something ancient from the bullpen ——the menagerie of a reliever, the circus of his hair, a messiah, an assassin, to climb the mound and prevent any further damage, to preserve it all, and in the next half inning,
to give us another chance,
one more chance,
and then one more,
over and over again.
but a pitcher has a ball
and a batter has a bat
and like any game played
since colliding ponies and mud ball sling shots
it’s only a duel
and sometimes you win and
sometimes you don’t.
it’s a still life,
a first supper of numbers,
perfect spread of names, columns and rows,
latitude and longitude,
knowing everything that happened,
and nothing at all.