Image

DREAM OF A BASEBALL STAR

Poem by Gregory Corso

I dreamed Ted Williams
leaning at night
against the Eiffel Tower, weeping.
 
He was in uniform
and his bat lay at his feet
–knotted and twiggy.

“Randall Jarrell says you’re a poet!” I cried.
“So do I! I say you’re a poet!”
 
He picked up his bat with blown hands;
stood there astraddle as he would in the batter’s box,
and laughed! flinging his schoolboy wrath
toward some invisible pitcher’s mound
–waiting the pitch all the way from heaven.
 
It came; hundreds came! all afire!
He swung and swung and swung and connected not one
sinker curve hook or right-down-the-middle.
A hundred strikes!
The umpire dressed in strange attire
thundered his judgment: YOU’RE OUT!
And the phantom crowd’s horrific boo
dispersed the gargoyles from Notre Dame.
 
And I screamed in my dream:
God! throw thy merciful pitch!
Herald the crack of bats!
Hooray the sharp liner to left!
Yea the double, the triple!
Hosannah the home run! 

Photo: “Lightning at the Eiffel Tower” by M. G. Loppé, 1902 (One of the earliest photographs of lightning in an urban setting.)