Casey Stops by the Ball Park on a Snowy Evening

“One of the hardest things in life to accept is a called third strike.” 
-- Robert Frost (1874-1963)


Whose field this was I used to know

But that was many years ago--

No one will see me stopping here

To practice batting in the snow.


The Mudville cranks would think it queer

To swing a bat without a sphere;

Have they forgotten what an ache

Has trailed that game of yesteryear?


Since '88 I've lain awake

At night to ponder my mistake--

To wait on one I could drive deep?

Perhaps a bender I could rake*...


The snow falls where the wind will sweep,

Regrets are wasted while we weep;

So while I swing, the town's asleep,

And still I swing though all must sleep.


With apologies to Robert Frost and thanks to George J. Heer ( @GJHeer2 ) , who inspired and required it! "Casey Stops by the Ball Park..." was selected as one of the juried winners of the first National Baseball Poetry Festival, held at Polar Park, the home of the @WooSox, on April 28-30, 2023.

Children playing baseball in the snow, 1956 

“When I was young," said Robert Frost, "I was so interested in baseball that my family was afraid I’d waste my life and be a pitcher. Later they were afraid I’d waste my life and be a poet. They were right.” 

He also wrote: “Poets are like baseball pitchers. Both have their moments. The intervals are the tough things.”

*To rake in baseball slang, equates to "hit the ball hard" and "to any part of the park." When you're raking, you're hitting very well.

  Robert Frost playing baseball at the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference, Vermont, 1940's

@HylaBrookPoets @breadloafwriter @thorn_john @amjuster @GJHeer2 #RobertFrost #CaseyattheBat #BalladoftheRepublic

Robert Frost is one of several American poets ( in the whimsical imagination of ) who could have penned an alternative "Casey at the Bat."  See "Emily Dickinson in the Elysian Fields;"  "Song of Our Game: The Ballad of Casey as Imagined by Walt Whitman;" and Casey in Ulalysium (as might have been imagined by Edgar Allan Poe). 

How old was Frost when Walt Whitman died? As it turns out, Whitman departed this earth (at age 72) on March 26, 1892 -- which was the same day as Robert Frost's 18th birthday. 

#RobertFrost #WaltWhitman #BalladoftheRepublic 


1 comment

Always clever and wise, my friend!

Linda Lightfoot February 10, 2021

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