We were the Generals,
Little League before there was a Little League,
sandlot ball on real sandlots.
No uniforms, but crayon-scrawled
names written on white tee shirts
with “Generals”  emblazoned
along with your favorite number,
(mine was number 4, in honor of
the Duke of Flatbush, Duke Snider).
We entertained other ragamuffin teams.
Bobby played short, I, first base
in pickup games in Brighton Beach,
deep in the heart of South Brooklyn.
We kept score – inaccurately.
We struck out often in the days
before younger baseball became so organized.
Those afternoons, dirty and hot,
birthed a life-long devotion to the game
where now an older man sits in front of the TV,
and watches his team and remembers.
We were the Generals.