Sunday, July 22, 2018

Poetry Sunday

Summer can be a magical time when you're young. It can also be a terrible time when you have to make sense of the world as you get older. This poem brings back memories of the better summers of youth.

American Summer 
by Edward Hirsch 

Each day was a time clock that scarcely moved,
a slow fist punching us in, punching us out,
electric heat smoldering in the purple air,
but each night was a towering white fly ball
to center field — “a can of corn” — coming down
through stars glittering above the diamond.
Each day was a pair of heavy canvas gloves
hoisting garbage cans into an omnivorous mouth
that crept through thoroughfares and alleys,
but each night was the feeling of a bat
coming alive in your hands, it was lining
the first good pitch for a sharp single.
That summer I learned to steal second base
by getting the jump on right-handed pitchers
and then sliding head-first into the bag.
I learned to drive my father’s stick shift
and to park with my girlfriend at the beach,
our headlights beaming and running low.
I was a 16-year-old in the suburbs
and each day was another lesson in working,
a class in becoming invisible to others,
but each night was a Walt Whitman of holidays,
the clarity of a whistle at 5 P.M.,
the freedom of walking out into the open air.

Have a good day and enjoy the rest of your weekend. I hope your summer - other than the churn of the political situation - is a good one.

More thoughts later.



Mike said...

I haven't heard the phrase “a can of corn” in quite a while.

allenwoodhaven said...

Very evocative. Very nice.