| Democrats at the Bat |
Wednesday, July 21, 2004
Karim Logue, a writer and intern with the Kerry campaign, is worried that the Republicans are playing hardball and the Democrats are not being tough enough in confronting them. So he penned this follow-on to the famed "Casey at the Bat" poem by Ernest L. Thayer and sent it to the Washington Post for publication. Portions of Logue's poem are excerpted in Wednesday's "In the Loop" column. The italicized lines below are from the original Thayer poem.
Then from five thousand throats and more there rose a lusty yell;
it rumbled through the valley, it rattled in the dell;
it pounded through the mountain and recoiled upon the flat;
for Casey, mighty Casey, was advancing to the bat.
They saw his face grow stern and cold, they saw his muscles strain,
and they knew that Casey wouldn't let that ball go by again.
The sneer has fled from Casey's lip, the teeth are clenched in hate.
He pounds, with cruel violence, his bat upon the plate.
And now the pitcher holds the ball, and now he lets it go,
and now the air is shattered by the force of Casey's blow.
We don't recall what happened next. Truth told: we do not care
Whether Casey hit a homer or slugged right on through the air.
For these are simple details which quickly escape our senses,
But in our mind lives Casey and he's pointing to the fences.
Yet what's happened to us lately: are we're playing not to lose?
Are we hiding in the dugout lest we get dirt upon our shoes?
And do the fathers and their sons whose optimists' demand for
Nothing more than our best swing now wonder what we stand for?
Whoever calls from the third row "Good eye, kid" is flat-lying
For he who watches balls go by is probably not trying.
And though a foul's a souvenir for kids on the first baseline
Nobody's ever won a game check-swinging from the waistline.
Yet while we grumble on about what Karl Rove has done
George Bush is busy claiming God, patriotism and the gun.
While we depend on polls to find out where the country's going
We, dizzy, follow the weather vane which the GOP is blowing.
They say we're flip-floppers. We say that we have better hair.
Bush has a room divided. We have one that doesn't care.
For every Monday morning we come out with a new slogan
And end up looking like Pee Wee Herman to their Hulk Hogan.
They say the road to hell is paved with bricks of good intention,
But frankly I'm more worried about our Democrats' Convention.
I fear that it will turn into a shiny happy hug-fest
While Republicans cork their bats and prepare for a slugfest.
Yet how is it that we aren't killing this Halliburton team,
Who thinks the EPA should fill in divots on the green?
Do these bow-tied country clubbers really represent this nation
Just because the President is good at mispronunciation?
It's the bottom of the ninth now; Casey's headed to the plate.
The score is tied at forty-six; the hour is getting late.
Silent, we stare at the man to whom our hopes our wedded
And wonder: will he swing the bat or must he get it vetted?
But this is too important not to step on a few toes.
If we want to rid the White House of its dirty CEOs
Then we'll have to kick some asses, ruffle feathers, realize that
It's not the taming of the shrew but the swinging of the bat.
Oh, somewhere in this favored land the sun is shining bright.
The band is playing somewhere, and somewhere hearts are light.
And, somewhere men are laughing, and little children shout,
And what happened next in Mudville? That's for us to figure out.
-- Karim Logue
© 2004 The Washington Post Company