A Beautiful Day For Baseball

Ended the season tied

A one game playoff would decide

League champion

And

Who would represent the district

TOC

Tournament Of Champions

Tigers vs. Giants

The hated Giants

Our rivals

 

Standing on the mound

Three outs away from winning

Got the first and second batter

Then a couple of hits

Wasn’t the type of pitcher to slow the game down

As soon as the catcher threw the ball back after a pitch

I’d whip it right back to him

Couple of pitches into the next batter

Coach yelled

Take a deep breath

 

Looked up

As I took the deep breath I normally wouldn’t take

Noticed, not a cloud in the sky

Perfect day for a ball game

Stepped on the rubber

Come on “Little Fernando”

Nicknamed after my favorite player

And fellow Mexican pitcher

Began my wind up

Hurled the ball toward the plate

Huge swing by the hitter

The kind that’s usually followed by a hand in the air

After knocking the ball out park

Except he got on top of it

A slow roller toward me on the mound

Calmly picked it up

Softly tossed it to the first baseman

Runner only a couple steps from the bag

When the ball landed in my teammates glove

And the umpire called him “Out!”

A collective cheer

As we beat our hated rivals

Jumping up and down

Tears rolling down my face

Soon I was bawling

Emotion got the best of me

 

Pops made his way over

Thought it was to congratulate me

Grabbed by the arm instead

Pulled away from cheering teammates

Low voice

Through gritted teeth and pursed lips

What’s wrong with you?

Why are you crying?

Anger in his face

Men don’t cry!

You’re embarrassing yourself, and me

He let me go and I rejoined my team

Moment of joy gone

Leaving my head buzzing with embarrassment

And some anger of my own

 

Tried to explain myself

On the way home

Even major leaguers cry

After winning the World Series dad

He quickly let me know

You didn’t win the World Series

I don’t care what others do

If your friends jumped off a bridge, would you do it too?

 

11 years old

Came to the conclusion

Had to become a man

Men don’t express feelings

Be tough

Don’t be a little bitch

Keep it in

Whatever you do

From now on

Keep it all in

 

A Beautiful Day For Baseball by Robert Rodriguez August 16, 2014. 6:32AM

A little disclaimer for today’s post, it’s something I wrote in 2014 and I’m sharing this because it took me a long time to get over this incident and how “machismo” in Latin culture and patriarchy overall can squash hopes and dreams and love and the human spirit in society and creates cold hearts, anger, resentment, low self esteem and worst of all self hate for having natural feelings. Just one man’s opinion.

4 thoughts on “A Beautiful Day For Baseball

  1. Never keep it all in, a man does not have to suffer in this manner. We are emotional human beings and should be able to cry in happiness, it is not the only emotion to express rage or something that needs to be bottled up that eventually strangles our veins and feelings from the inside if we do not give it the natural release it requires. I enjoyed hearing about your baseball escapades in this prose poem and think that it serves well as a valuable life lesson to illustrate that we should be respectful of our own feelings and emotions, as they are good indicators to help identify problems and find solutions for them that benefit our own well-being.

    Like

  2. Thanks David, it was pretty much a must to hold it all in at age 11 when showing emotion basically led to a beating. Nowadays, thankfully, I have put the scars behind me. My dad and I have a great relationship now and I can talk freely and I am not afraid to admit my true and honest self to him. He thanks me and apologizes for the way he treated me when he was a young boy.

    The first time my dad ever told me he was proud of me was after I had a son of my own and he saw how I treated him with respect and allowed him to be himself.
    In case you were wondering, it was only when I rediscovered writing and its healing powers at about age 33 that I was able to gain my voice. It reminded me to be in touch with my feelings and opinions which I had buried so deep in order to survive the trauma of having an overbearing father when I was young.
    Happy New Year my friend!

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s