It is the most common goal, lying there
Waiting for someone, anyone, to visit,
Stay a while, get things done, then move on.
It values cleanliness, acknowledging that
Of all the bases it is least receptor of a slide.
Sometimes runners glide past it, barely
Touching it with toes, on to bigger things —
But it doesn’t mind. It treasures its high place
In the hierarchy, realizing that no runs will be scored
Without its cloud to earth presence, so it endures
The nervousness of the base-stealer, the disappointment
Of the hitter held there when he thought he’d hit a double,
The company of enemy combatants stepping on it,
Even jostling for position, for it feel secure in realizing
That it is a worthy friend to its companion,
The right-side foul line (which constantly complains that
It should be called a fair line, and who else would listen
To such foul language day after day?) — and so first base
Treasures being the hub of much activity and lies there
Proudly and doesn’t mind the footprints because
It recognizes that only it has earned, among all bases,
The cherished place of being recognized as “First.”