.

All Major League Baseball teams share revenues,
We treat them as if they were brothers.
But sometimes self-interest means we refuse
To treat each the same as the others.

Some teams like the Yankees are wealthy, you see,
We want them to win by competing.
But when they are threatened by teams like KC
We crush them by blatantly cheating.

The championship game for the famed GameStop Cup
Began with the Yankee team leading.
But after two innings the Royals were up
It looked like the Yankees were bleeding.

So, in the third inning with KC in place,
A rule change was hardly expected.
“From now on you cannot go past second base,”
We said, “with the Yankees excepted.”

The rule, without doubt, clearly favored the Yanks;
The Royals cried “Foul!” and protested.
Their pleas went the way of the late Ernie Banks:
Dead and buried, they were—though contested.

And when the game ended, the Yankees had won,
Their GameStop Cup raised in the air.
The little guys lost (with our help) by one run.
Complaining the game wasn’t fair.

Like Wall Street investing its all in the tools
Abused by the winners who make up the rules.

.

.

James A. Tweedie is a retired pastor living in Long Beach, Washington. He has written and self-published four novels and a collection of short stories. 


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13 Responses

  1. Russel Winick

    Your apt analogy works for me, James. For your sequel you can use the Astros.

    Reply
    • James A. Tweedie

      I used KC because they had the smallest team payroll in MLB several years ago (they now stand 20th out of 30 MLB teams). Houston would fit the upper profile being the fourth highest behind #1 LA Dodgers, #2 Yankees, & #3 LA Angels. The lowest payroll currently is Cleveland.

      Reply
      • Russel Winick

        Yep, all that payroll and talent, and still Houston saw fit to cheat outrageously. You could surely write a great poem about that too.

  2. Benjamen Grinberg

    Dear James, how do you do it? Does your forty(?) years of experience writing poems just flow out from your pen? When I’m writing I find myself having to beat my head on the table. I can hardly get a poem of this quality out in time to keep up with current events. But you and the other poets on this site seem to just be able to sit down and do it. It’s baffling and awesome.

    Kindly,
    Ben

    P.S. To clarify, when I do anything I tend to only be able to do it for five minutes and then I have to do something else, so it may just be a problem with me.

    Reply
    • James A. Tweedie

      Good question, Ben. I can’t speak for anyone else, but that’s pretty much it. I come up with an idea, I sit down for 30 minutes or 40 minutes and write the poem and then spend an hour or so polishing it to get the rhythm and rhyme as smooth as possible. Usually there is one awkward line that eats up most of that time until it falls into place. Then I move on to something else, like write a short story. My muse is quite eclectic, spontaneous and random. And, yes, doing this every day does help since there is as much or more skill involved as there is inspiration. The two parts of the process work together and both are necessary.

      I’m glad you liked the poem. It was fun to write.

      Reply
  3. C.B. Anderson

    Egad, James. A poem ultimately about the other Golden Rule: He who has the gold makes the rules. It has been said that there is no crying in baseball, but I don’t think anyone ever said that there is no cheating in baseball. Think of steroids & HGH. In regard to your response to Mr. Grinberg, I might add a saying attributed to Thomas Edison: Genius is ten percent inspiration and ninety percent perspiration. But your poems are so fluid that most readers probably think that you never break a sweat. Maybe you don’t. For me, the execution is rarely the problem. Coming up with an idea I care to write about is always the hard part. After that, it’s just a matter of time.

    Reply
    • benjamen grinberg

      C.B.–for you the execution is rarely the problem. Is this because you have spent so much perspiration in years prior?

      Reply
      • benjamen grinberg

        Maybe a better question is— it takes years of practice to be in the “zone”. And when you’re in the zone, once you have the intended meaning in place, the words come of themselves, the rhythm, the rhyme, all the implied meanings, they’re just there premade.

        And to relate it back to the poem– it’s the “zone”. I think that relates to baseball right? And I love C.B’s insight: there’s no crying in baseball but there’s certainly cheating.

      • C.B. Anderson

        Since 2003, Benjamen. I cranked out a lot of bad poems in the beginning, and rhyme & meter was the easy part. Much harder was learning to keep syntax together, staying on theme, and getting editors to “buy” my ideas. It’s not so much being in the “zone” as it is learning how many different ways there are to express a particular meaning in English. I think the experience of the process is likely different for everyone. My advice would be to write as many “bad” poems as possible, just to get them out of the way, and to figure out why they are not as good as you would like them to be.

      • benjamen grinberg

        Another common method I believe is to work on the poem over a long period of time. Refining a line here, adding a line there. I’ve heard it takes years. Even after the poem is published some poets appraise their poems never finished. But I don’t know if that’s really the case. One approach I’ve taken is to strum a guitar and put words into the music based on what I want to say. It results in a bad poem but in words that I otherwise wouldn’t have been able to write. The strumming and music clears my mind.

  4. C.B. Anderson

    Someone said/wrote (Paul Valery) that a poem is never finished only abandoned (ipse dixit. I hope it doesn’t take years, but I have gone back to poems from ten years ago and polished them up a bit. I don’t abandon old poems, I just store them in “cold” files.

    Reply

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