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Original Poem, Defeat (Poetry Friday)

Defeat

Defeat
tastes like sour when you were expecting sweet,
looks like rain on the last day of school,
sounds like fingernails grating chalkboards,
smells like smoke from a cap gun,
feels like hope ripped away.


About the poem:

We're in the final rounds of travel baseball season for my son's team -- today, Cincinnati; late next week, an eight-day tournament in Indianapolis -- and yesterday, the team played back-to-back games in 100-degree heat. The boys' record was 58-5, with nine tournament wins, and they won their first game of this tournament easily, by slaughter rule. But during the second game, the boys committed eight errors, and the come-from-behind type of victory that they've become known for eluded them.

"We beat ourselves," my son told me afterward. Later, at the hotel, he still looked a little stunned by what had happened. "This feels weird," he said as he walked around the room, as though he wasn't quite sure what to do with himself.

"Just go out there and enjoy the experience," I told him. And he found plenty to enjoy at the hotel later: a wrestling match with the father of another boy (I think this man took six of the kids on, separately); a steak dinner with his grandparents, at a restaurant where a former Yankees player was dining nearby (they were able to say hi to the man as he passed by, which made Sam's night); "Angry Birds" tournaments with his friends (a game you can buy for iPhone or iPod Touch); and all-you-can-eat pancakes, bacon, and sausage for breakfast at the hotel buffet.

Happy writing, everyone! And happy weekend!

Update, Saturday evening: Sam's team beat a Florida team and won its pool, and with it, a bearth in the final rounds on Sunday morning. Game is at 8 a.m. Ohio time (7 a.m. our time), and the field is an hour away, which means we'll be leaving at 6 a.m. Ohio time for practice. The boys face a really competitive team from Houston. Fingers crossed.

Comments

( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
kellyrfineman
Jul. 11th, 2010 11:00 pm (UTC)
Great poem! I hope this morning's game went well!
jeniwrites
Jul. 12th, 2010 10:45 am (UTC)
Thank you! I had fun writing it (and loved your "do it in the road" poem). His team lost 7-5 to the number 10 team in the nation, the Houston Lightning. On the one hand, the boys were bummed, because they'd made errors that cost them the win, but on the other hand, losing by just two runs to a team of that caliber wasn't too shabby. Sam and I stuck around afterward to watch that team play the no. 1 team in the nation. "I love baseball," he told me on the way home, just before he fell asleep. :)
kellyrfineman
Jul. 12th, 2010 11:39 am (UTC)
That last comment of his is why it was all so worth it, isn't it? A
stephwooten
Jul. 12th, 2010 10:39 pm (UTC)
Ooh, I do love Poetry Fridays, especially when it's Jeni's poems! haha No, but really. I love it. The last line is PERFECT.
jeniwrites
Jul. 13th, 2010 10:17 am (UTC)
Thank you! See what a geek I am: I think of lines of poetry in between baseball games. :) I'm glad you are having a good summer!!
(Deleted comment)
jeniwrites
Jul. 14th, 2010 02:19 pm (UTC)
Thank you so much! I was never an athletic kid myself (I'm the one making up lines of poetry in my head in between games, lol), but I love that my son has a passion for this, and it's fun just to watch him do what he loves. It's an awesome thing to encourage a child's passion, and to help that child through the ups and downs of the experiences, too.

I hope you're having a good summer! I saw photos from your trip recently, where you and several others met Katherine Patterson. Wow!!
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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