Thursday, August 23, 2007

Richard III (not Richard the Third)

This is one part of a nine-poem series called The Galilee Hitchhiker, first published as a chap book in the early 1960's, then included in a collection called "The Pill Versus the Spring Hill Mine Disaster" in 1968.

A Baseball Game

Part 7

Baudelaire went
to a baseball game
and bought a hot dog
and lit up a pipe
of opium.
The New York Yankees
were playing
the Detroit Tigers.
In the fourth inning
an angel committed
suicide by jumping
off a low cloud.
The angel landed on second base,
causing the
whole infield
to crack like
a huge mirror.

The game was
called on
account of

The Yankees, I suspect, were winning and the angel could not abide another smug, arrogant Yankee victory and this was his unselfish, heroic way of changing the outcome. Yes, he told himself, it's just a game, it's just one game in a long season, but that sense of entitlement, that smirk, that swagger -- someone has to put a stop to it, send them a sign, restore some balance to the world if only for an afternoon.

Of course, I do not think Brautigan was a Yankee-hater, I think he was a Baudelaire-lover and the angel incident was a Baudelaire hallucination. But I do wish someone would wipe that smirk off the Yankees faces.

Come to think of it, the Red Sox are doing a fair job of that this year, as is the Yankees bullpen.

What a great closing line, though: The game was called on account of fear. Wouldn't you love to hear James Earl Jones say that?


Bleeet said...

I want the Yankees to all die, and anyone who likes them; they represent everything wrong with professional sports in this world.

Was that too harsh?

Bleeet said...


One of the Yankees gets to live and three or four fans.

But only as objects of pity; so we can all see what evil there used to be in the world.

Bleeet said...

Alright, fine, no one dies...

But, simultaneously, all Yankees players and fans break their right ankles.

I think that's a good compromise.

Bleeet said...

Screw this...

I'm writing a list.

That'll teach the bastards.

Bleeet said...

(evil laugh, evil laugh)

(again, evil laugh)

(and once more)

Jim H. said...

Okay, Brendon, but what did you think of Brautigan's poem?

Who would rather have read the closing line: Lawrence Olivier or Paul Linde?