for John D. Fairfield

You pick yourself up,

brush off the dust,

look back at the ump

(can’t see the face

behind the face-mask),

plant your feet

back in the box,

choke up a bit

on the bat,

turn to face

all the legs and arms of one hell of an ace.


Before you’re settled in the box a white streak paints the black on the outside corner at the knees. The floating smirk above the rubber is a white slice of wonder that knows which side the bread is buttered on.


Bat cranked,

high-step started,

she means to catch up to the blur of heat

before it drops

off the table

she clears with a swing

and a miss.


get a whiff

of the mixed grill

sizzling across the plate

eat it

or send it back

with a little mustard


If he isn’t giving in

If he hasn’t made a mistake

If he’s simply too wild

And everything is way in or way out

Tyrone Williams teaches literature and theory at Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio. He is the author of five books of poetry, c.c. (Krupskaya Books, 2002), On Spec (Omnidawn Publishing, 2008), The Hero Project of the Century (The Backwaters Press, 2009), Adventures of Pi (Dos Madres Press, 2011) and Howell (Atelos Books, 2011). He is also the author of several chapbooks, including a prose eulogy, Pink Tie (Hooke Press, 2011). His website is at http://home.earthlink.net/~suspend/