Like Gehrig’s farewell these few words
echo with an emptiness that I could become.
Now that our talk has turned
hopelessly to euphemism and summers
of dead metaphors, I try to keep
the bottom of the ninth alive,
even humor myself with a painfully
awful pun, the count now to and to.
To her, death’s my incurable disease,
to me—a quiet release. On the way home
I listened to her voice
soft as dove-sorrow, wondering how
it was going to be not to think, thinking
how I could really answer her one question,
trite as it sounded: Why did it have to be
like this? But all I could do was ride
silently along, watching the world glide by
in all its cloud-drift temporality,
grateful that it hadn’t always been
pinstripes, sunshine, and a wind blowing out.
And now that memory will get the nod,
I wait and pray for October to show
what else I have to look forward to,
more thankful than ever to have seen
Agee’s sure glove, that smudged ball
off Cleon’s polished shoe. There’s hope,
still pulling for another Amazing year,
a white blur disappearing into blue.
—Greg Sellers, “Postseason,” from New Letters: A Magazine of Writing & Art (Vol. 68, Nos. 3 & 4)