Mets 4, Phillies 5. A walk-off single in extra innings ended a four-game winning streak.
This one is for friend and fellow poet Erin Mullikin, who once challenged me to write a poem about being a Mets fan. Three years later, here it is.
The Agony of Fandom
I was born in 1986, and my father was torn
between feeding his infant son
and praying in front of the TV for the Mets
to beat the Sox in the World Series,
one rare win that shouldn’t have even happened
if it weren’t for the ball that slipped
out of Bill Buckner’s grasp. Those Mets
are like your three-legged mutt that outwits
the Rottweiler next door to steal his bone,
yet gets trounced the next day for it.
But that’s the strange agony inflicted
by the Mets on their fans. Yet, we learn
patience and forgiveness. We wait for the wins
to come. In 1962, the Loveable Losers played
for my eight-year-old father,
a little redheaded Irish kid from Queens,
when he went with his mother to a Mets game
at the Polo Grounds, their first season. They lost.
So began a lifelong love affair that drove me,
a diehard fan who is one generation removed
from the source, to drink late into the night
after a World Series thumping. But, the next day,
I’m wearing my blue and orange hat anyway
because I’m one stubborn goddamn Mets fan
who will never give up on his team.