We are at a Detroit Tigers game — Hadley, Harper, Jesse, and I — and we are just thinking about hot dogs and cotton candy before taking our seats, when Harper sees a clear view of the baseball diamond. I may sound like I’m being dramatic when I write that a hush fell over her, and like a magnet she was pulled toward the field, but that’s what happened. She wasn’t even near the Tigers (her father’s favorite team). It was the other guys, and they weren’t really doing anything. But Harper watched like a lioness zeroing in on what it was she was after; her face was a wonderful mix of curiosity and determination.
It’s not true the players weren’t doing anything. They were warming up — punching their mitts, strapping on catcher’s equipment, rotating their pitching arms. And watching Harper watch the players I thought that to have a dream — perhaps a true dream — doesn’t manifest itself in the perfect catches and the home runs, though I know Harper hopes for these things. I think having a dream means having a will to begin.
Watching Harper on an evening when summer is loosening its muscles from the memory of this year’s polar vortex, I realize that this season too has a turn to show what it’s capable of. I think that no matter where we are in the pursuit of our dreams, we must always have the willingness to begin.
In his poem, “Warm Up” Douglas Florian captures the magic in beginning:
Bend to the left
Bend to the right.
S t r e t c h out those muscles,
Too tense and too tight.
Catch a ball lightly.
Jump and jog.
Warm yourself up
Like a fireplace log.
Consider the dreams you have for yourself. What does your warm-up look like? What does it sound or feel like? Write a poem about your dream warming up. Or perhaps, you warming up to your dream.
Thanks to everyone who participated in last week’s poetry prompt. Here’s an excerpt from Tiffany’s poem that we enjoyed:
On the path
Heating up in the dappled sun over the
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