The Baseball *

— for L. T.

Scarred and torn, covered in mold,
I found a baseball, huddled against
the curb, a grey, mid-winter day,
too cold for outdoor play.
Had it been lost during father-daughter
pitching practice? By a Little Leaguer?
Hit out of the park by Ted Williams?
Fenway is only eight miles away.
Then I read “Made in China.”
It was obvious. The ball had crossed
oceans, braved heat and cold,
had risked everything to come to
America. To play America’s greatest
game. The American Dream.

We have enough baseballs,
I thought, made right here
in the U.S.A. What was
one baseball to me. I have
my own problems.

I tossed it back.