it used to be, then it wasn't, and now it is again

it used to be, then it wasn't, and now it is again

A Poem by jacob erin-cilberto

 

 

 

it used to be, then it wasn't, and now it is again

 

 

 

a Brooklyn summer

apartments now

where the Dodgers used to play

 

Ebbets Field a cadaver

buried in a Flatbush cemetery of meaning

New York a flashy array of high-rise headstones

 

Coogan's Bluff

has a sign

but no Giants to grace it

and Willie's cap never flies off

when the Polo Grounds is ripe for razing

 

the old players are grazing

on mountainsides hitting two seamers

over an iron fence

 

the boys of summer are the old men of winter

now

 

there was lightning in a bottle

until a Yankee became a carpetbagger

and the South watched its cotton balls

slugged over a rotting plantation

 

and 1947 happened

and number 42 happened

and everything almost became equal

until it wasn't

 

again

again

the Yankees kept hitting

but those other soldiers went out west

 

and the Brooklyn summer 

turned a scorched eye

to a California winter

 

and a pastime became a past time

until all the players

wore the same uniforms

and fans only saw the numbers on their backs

not the color of their bats

 

Willie's eyes are bad now

and Jackie is long gone

but still celebrated

even though the streets to the stadium

 

are paved with separation

and we are all sliding into second

backwards.

 

 

erin-cilberto

1/12/2021

© 2021 jacob erin-cilberto


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If I recall correctly, the Dodgers were playing at Ebbets Field when they won their first World Series in '55. A few years later they and the Giants both decamped for California. This one is about time and change and how some things don't change. I wonder how those old players would react to the age of Covid-19. As Yogi put it, "It ain't over 'til it's over!"


Posted 1 Month Ago


jacob erin-cilberto

1 Month Ago

You got it...as the Brooklyn Dodgers they were 1-8 in World Series play...'55 they won,'56 Yanks got.. read more
this is simply brilliant. the way you made your statements was masterfully crafted. Using America's game baseball as a back drop against gentrification and the call for equality is simply brilliant. Below are my favorite lines!

and a pastime became a past time
until all the players
wore the same uniforms
and fans only saw the numbers on their backs
not the color of their bats


Willie's eyes are bad now
and Jackie is long gone
but still celebrated
even though the streets to the stadium
are paved with separation
and we are all sliding into second backwards.

Posted 1 Month Ago


jacob erin-cilberto

1 Month Ago

Thank you for your kind words, Rico.
j.

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2 Reviews
Added on January 22, 2021
Last Updated on January 22, 2021

Author

jacob erin-cilberto
jacob erin-cilberto

Carbondale, IL



About
Originally from Bronx, NY, I live in Carbondale, Illinois...teach English at two community colleges and have been writing and publishing poetry since 1970. Friending works two ways. If we have had .. more..

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