An Art

Skill at losing is no difficult art.
So much stuff is trying to say you should
Lack it, that with it it’s not hard to part.

Try losing day and night. Know you will dart
For hours, looking for small bits of wood.
Skill at losing is no difficult art.

Now work on losing much: a car, a cart,
Locations,  family, what was a good
Spot to go to. Stay within your small part.

I lost my mom’s watch. And look! Now I start
Losing a block, a suburb, or my ‘hood.
Skill at losing is no difficult art.

I lost a city, glorious. It won’t smart
That I lost four brooks, this land, all I could
Look at. I miss it, but I claim this part.

And losing you (a joking sound, a fart–
Humor) I maintain truth, and so I would
Say losing’s not so difficult an art
Though it may look as if I’ll fall apart.

On first Looking into Chapman’s Translation

I visit many distant lands of gold
And find many goodly kingdoms abroad.
Across many islands down south, I’d trod,
Which bards loyal to grand Apollo hold.
Oft of a vast location, I was told,
A high-brow’d historian’s old domain
But hoping to visit it was in vain
Till I saw Chapman talk out loud and bold:
It was as if, watching in a night sky,
I’d found out that an unknown orb had swum
Into sight, or how Balboa did spy
Pacific foam afar–and, all struck dumb
His sailors look’d around, not knowing why–
Upon a hill in Panama, half-numb.

(As in “Bright Star”, this author puts punctuation in highly lucky locations for my parodying! What can I say?)

The further adventures of Ryno

Back to the team for which he played
So briefly, once, and there displayed
The first signs of talent that made
Him famous, thus Ryne Sandberg bade
Chicago farewell. Still dismayed,
Perhaps, that some people had paid
Too much attention, when they weighed
Various results, to a fade
The Cubs averted, and thus stayed


Well then.

Maybe he hopes it’ll teach them not to be so haughty.

Secondhand Lyons

Last March I posted this parody of William Blake’s “The Tyger”; changing the Is to Ys in “Lyon” wasn’t necessary, but I did it to more closely parallel the original.

Well, some users of came across it, and it’s now the challenge of the month! If you’ve ever felt like writing a lipogram but can’t be bothered to pick out the relative frequencies of the remaining 25 letters, you might want to go ahead and scramble the first stanza of “A Lyon” as it appears here (note that this version spells “Lion” with Is both times, which should be slightly easier to anagram than the alternative).

I just feel very pleased and honored. 😀

No-hitters graph (complete through 2010)

Good thing I held off and didn’t do anything at the end of the regular season!

In fact, I actually used the data for a poem I wrote, of all things, an actual poetry class. (I write weird stuff there. It doesn’t even rhyme, usually!) Part of the prompt for the poem was to begin with an arcane fact on a subject you are the expert in…so that’s exactly what I did.

Bats and Balls (Reprise)

Who’s that playing the Rangers?
I’ll tell you who’s that playing the Rangers.
Rookies and a Freak and a Kung Fu Panda and a Beard and a barrel of madcap strangers
Those are who’s playing the Rangers.

What’s in the daily news?
I’ll tell you what’s in the daily news.
Story about game five, Giants hoping to clinch it, Rangers just trying not to lose
That’s what’s in the daily news.

What’s happening all over?
I’ll tell you what’s happening all over.
Fans sitting at home by television sets, wondering if this is when the season will be over.
That’s what’s happening all over.

When you see a bat
Whipping around a hat
You can bet that it’s just looking for a ball…


Follow the trend and hit no more,
Hit no more, hit no more.
Put down the baseball bat, use it no more.
Follow, follow the trend.


A World Series ring would look grand
On any given pitching hand,
So closers try to bar the door
Making sure the batters don’t score.
When many a rookie’s a star
You’d better give thanks to your scout,
And things being how they are
Hope you can get that final out.
So the Arlington ballpark’s the spot
For both teams to give all that they’ve got.

It was good old reliable Brian
Brian, Brian, Brian Wilson
If you’re looking for action, his mound is the spot
And he’ll serve you up heaters when he gets hot
Yeah it’s good old reliable Brian
Hoping not to issue a walk
And to end the Giants’ established title drought
Since they left New York.


I got your batter here, they’re gonna end the year
With him still on the bench, I can see it clear.
Cantu, Cantu, this guy that they’ll have, Cantu.
Won’t get a chance to come through, come through, come through.

His batting skill was clear, I know this will sound queer
But it’ll turn out to be the pitchers’ year.
Cantu, Cantu, it sounds crazy to me too.
But this sort of pace won’t do, won’t do, won’t do.

Now listen here, this Bum? He’s not really a bum
And it’s through him that lots of success will come
The kids, the kids, will avert potential skids
And someday attract big bids, big bids, big bids.

And speaking of which. Cliff! His arm will not be stiff
And he’ll keep pitching through hoping for a whiff.
Has chance, has chance, with him they still have a chance
You’ll see how far they’ll advance, advance, advance.

Now just a minute, boys, you make a lot of noise
But we’ll just have to see all the season’s joys.
Who knows, who knows, which way any season goes?
Only after, I suppose, suppose, suppose.

It once seemed so unclear, but now the end is here.
Oh, what a crazy year!