Listen, that ball looked like a pea to me coming in there once in a while.
Hell, no, I couldn't see the laces.
Believe me when I say
my spine is the reason why I feel
Ted Williams hit by the stitches.
Even if this very vision
belongs to urban legend,
in trying to translate
because whatever that was—real
or not—cannot be explained
by theories or equations.
Stay with me here.
It’s like trying to replicate
the “wiring” of Ted Williams
when that in itself
has no mass
Imagine instead Ted Williams as a wave function
of probable position & momenta.
You think I’m being difficult.
When it’s my spine
that’s a mess & to be honest, I know as much
about its moxie & mechanics
as I do baseball.
That is to say: I’m a Mets fan
because I live off the 7.
Stay with me. It gets worse.
When I was a kid with a less tender spine,
I shouted TOUCHDOWN! at an Astros game
& cheered for Warren Moon. This is a true story.
I would not stop cheering. Now the Oilers are gone.
The Dodgers moved out of Brooklyn. There’s no crying in
the MRI. If you operate, I will run. This is what I’ve learned:
My spine is a magical place that would rather
master its true destiny
as a quantum field.
Baseball fields rely on some wicked magical
geometry. This is what I’ve learned.
Most baseballs in the major league travel
at 90 miles per hour. It’s like witnessing a peregrine
falcon come for you & keeping your eyes
open, although it can divebomb
at twice that speed.
How wave function is a falcon. You tell me.
I’d like to travel at 180 miles per hour.
I do get sick on roller coasters.
I only like those that drop you backward.
For some reason falling the wrong way at high speeds
relaxes my spine. I’d like to divebomb the Cyclone
on Coney Island, weave
in & out of its crossbeams,
thanks to my sharp, falcon eyes
& wave function-like avian wiring.
How being a flexible thing is such glory.
Because my spine is not these days.
Which is partly why I’m in physical therapy.
It’s not just gentle stretches & easy gains.
My joints are stiff & my spine
curves where it shouldn’t. Still I rush these city streets
to make my trains. I’d like to divebomb the subway.
Land on a moving car & mock its speed.
No, you’d never see me coming.
My stats so magical
as I curve
time. I’d be without equation.
I’d go unproven in warped theories.
There I am now, off the 7, with all these
Mets fans in fresh Mets jerseys & bright
blue Mets caps. I’m filling the little gaps
& aches in their spines,
with wave functions of magical wiring.
This is what I’ve learned
in physical therapy:
how to feel
what I can’t,
joint & muscle
What is most silent
to bear my own beautiful
theories on speed
of the most unmoving of things.
I’d like to think Ted Williams
might hear how you taunt me
from within, my stitches,
& threadbare. Only he
would feel the angle nearly
of that feeling,
as it’s thrown farther