by Edwin A. Hoey
With two 60s stuck on the scoreboard
And two seconds hanging on the clock,
The solemn boy in the center of eyes,
Squeezed by silence,
Seeks out the line with his feet,
Soothes his hands along his uniform,
Gently drums the ball against the floor,
Then measures the waiting net,
Raises the ball on his right hand,
Balances it with his left,
Calms it with fingertips,
And then through a stretching of stillness,
Nudges it upwards.
Slides up and out,
Plays it coy
Until every face begs with unsounding screams--
Right before ROAR-UP,
Drives down and through.
My non-team sports mined child had NO clue what this poem was all about. So I found this video of a foul shot and then it made sense to him. :)
What do the two 60's mean? (tied game)
Two seconds hanging what does that mean? (game is almost over).
Why is the boy wiping his hands on his clothes? (calm himself, soothe)
How do you think the people watching felt as the ball went up in the air?
Why? What words are used to tell you this?
(hesitates, exasperates, plays it coy)
What does it mean to play it coy? (to show reluctance in revealing what one will do)
Do you really think that a ball can play it coy? When they use human terms to describe what a non-human object is doing it's called personification.
What do you think the ROAR UP is all about? Why do you think the author puts those words in capital letters? How to you think it would sound? What might people be doing?
You can dissect the poem as well looking for items such as action words and accompanying nouns such as "Seeks out... the line".
Pay attention to how the poem is written, the line breaks, the in and out to length and spacing of the lines.