“Ah, Fans, let not the Quarry but the Chase
Be that to which most fondly we aspire!
For us not Stake, but Game; not Goal, but Race—
THIS is the end of every fan’s desire.”
Franklin P Adams, “A Ballad of Baseball Burdens”
I cheated on this one. Started in the last stanza to get the gist and substance. The whole is a wonderful litany of baseball names and sounds of times past by a newspaper columnist (who says columns are not a form of poetry?). I love the mock-ballad structure and tone of this piece and the way Adams incorporates the sounds of fandom (“Else you shall feel the brunt of fandom’s ire/ Biff, bang it, clout it, hit it on the knob”).