May 12, 2009

Peter Harris

WILL BUDDHISM SURVIVE?

Only if we all become that second baseman
who dove to his right, snagged the liner, thudded
to a stop on his belly, too late to get up or change
hands, too late to do anything but what he could
not do, had never tried, could not have done if he had tried:
shovel the gloved ball backhanded over his back
without looking to the shortstop. No,

not to the shortstop, but to where the shortstop
would be when he flew across the bag,
barehanded the ball, toed the bag, swiveled,
elevated above the maverick ox of truth barreling
down on him from first, high enough to make the throw
for the double play. Game over.
The not-doable, done. Outside the scriptures.
Outside thought: No sound at all inside
the redundant thunder of applause.

from Rattle 27, Summer 2007