Page:America's National Game (1911).djvu/489

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457
AMERICA'S NATIONAL GAME

BASE BALL.

By S. D. Richardson.

'Tis a glorious game, with a well-earned fame,
A diamond in royal setting;
And its beautiful rays light up our days
From the field with an emerald fretting.
So day after day I am watching the play,
Absorbed In the outings and innings;
Though I risk not a dime, I'm gainer each time.
And the joy that it gives is my winnings.

But sometimes on a day my mind is away
From the game with an idle perusing,
And I think of another so much like the other
That I blend them together in musing:
'Tis the old game of life, with its conquest and strife.
With its wonderful outings and innings;
Where the umpire of fate forever doth wait
Giving gladness and sorrow for winnings.

There's the man at the bat, he's a king on that plat,
And he watches the ball that is fleeting
'Till his blow meets the same, and it soars o'er the game
And receives from the people a greeting.
'Tis the man who doth wait while fortune that's great,
Changing hands like the shuttle in weaving.
Comes and touches his mace, and he runs every base,
While the people shout, "Luck is retrieving!"

See the pitcher, whose aim is surely not tame,
While his curvings are often perplexing;
And the poise of his fist, with the twist of his wrist,
To those running the bases is vexing.
'Tis the man who in fame hits the mark all the same,
Though he throws a curved ball there to do it;
And the one who would steal a base on his field,
Will have cause to remember and rue it.

And the catcher with nerve that all good might deserve,
And a visor drawn low for the danger;
With a smile by that base that's as cruel to face
As the blow of a spiteful sky-ranger—
'Tis the man of strong nerve, whom no terror can swerve,
And who laughs where the peril is thickest;
And he guards the home base 'gainst the strong in the race,
And outs them with hand that is quickest.