A thin skin of ice took hold of the lake.
Half a mile away, Canada geese feed
on seeds scattered to reseed the ball fields.
Their beaks open like gloves, fielding any
ball in play, even trying for fouls.
The batting cages and dugouts look out
of place, like the few old men who brave
the cold with stale bread for the pigeons.
In Brooklyn, in Prospect Park, they still talk
of Sandy Koufax. Eighteen strikeouts in one game!
Eighteen! How many times, and that letters-
to-laces curveball! More career strikeouts
than innings pitched! See, waiting is more
than just till spring training or opening day,
it’s about the next Koufax. Sure, the room
is always full of talent, but in that room
there’s only room for one or two each
generation. My generation.
Remember the Who? The summertime of life
and the like … baseball is about your youth.
Once the legs go, you take what you can get:
news of winter trades, classic games on cable.
Look, when spring training is three months away
and it’s further still to opening day …
between the geese and frozen lake, it’s the wait.