A Poem with Dick Allen’s Name in It

I’ve almost definitely mentioned, at some point in these pages, that, before my life as Semi-Professional Baseball Writer, I read and wrote poems quite a lot — sometimes to the point of a stranger actually publishing them.

While I’ve generally seen no reason to explicitly combine these two worlds — i.e. that of baseball- and poems-writing — it seems that NotGraphs might be an appropriate place for such a thing, if only as a one-off experiment.

If the reader is under the impression that most poems are terrible, then the reader is under the correct impression. In fact, most poems are written with the express purpose of emotionally scarring American high school students. However, there are other writers — ones who receive less attention, maybe — with the novel idea that poems could actually be enjoyable. These are the ones from whom I’ve shamelessly stolen everything.

A Poem with Dick Allen’s Name in It

In this game I made up, what you do
is think of exactly ten hundred things
better than discussing the role of poetry
in today’s society. If you’re looking
for an example, here’s one: “the role of
a donkey’s nads in today’s society.”
And also: “crackers — either in the racist,
or every other, way.”

Which, that reminds me:
you’ll never guess who I saw at the frigging
library yesterday. Former baseballing great
Dick Allen! He was doing some bizarrely intense
research on the historic Burlingame Olympics.
He was dressed in a jacket made exclusively
from the lapels of other jackets. When I saw him,
I was all, “Dick Allen! You suffered the slings
and arrows of outrageous Philadelphians! What possible
coping mechanisms could you have developed?” —
which question he answered by quietly lathering in Wite Out
all, or close to all, of his myriad interior scars.

Image stolen directly from Dick Allen Hall of Fame

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Carson Cistulli has just published a book of aphorisms called Spirited Ejaculations of a New Enthusiast.

11 Responses to “A Poem with Dick Allen’s Name in It”

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  1. Erik Hahmann says:

    That was terrible.

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  2. kalarson says:

    I love that you linked to David Berman. Great stuff.

    oh, and these Dick Allen posts make me wish he was in the HoF and that I had even heard of him before recently.

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  3. J-money says:

    Is “Wite Out” what you meant to write?

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  4. J-money says:

    Thanks, this is good stuff, and the amazon links gave me good Christmas presents.

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  5. You made certain fine points there. I did a search on the subject matter and found the majority of folks will have the same opinion with your blog.

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  6. eric says:

    I think that the person above me is spam? Nice poem.

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  7. eric says:

    Any plans to put more poetry on this site or to talk more about baseball poery?

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  8. eric says:


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  9. Chutley says:

    I worry. How long will it take for Dick Allen to get into the Hall of Fame? So we can get the discussion going of where he ranks among the all-time greats.

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  10. eric says:

    good question

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