A poem from my past with some baseball ties
With this year's World Series coming to a conclusion on Sunday, I decided now would be a prime opportunity for me to share a piece of poetry I found stashed in my old high school yearbook.
It was nearly 20 years ago that Matt Wentz and I were presented with the assignment by Dr. Gilligan in his Creative Writing class to write an English Ode poem.
So, with us both being die-hard Phillies' fans and the Phillies making the postseason for the first time in 10 years back in 1993, we thought we would have a little fun with one of our other teachers that year.
Although the Phillies didn't win the World Series in 1993, 15 years after this piece of poetry was written the Phillies did win it all, beating the Rays in the 2008 World Series.
When we did this piece, we dedicated it to Mr. Jim Nonnemaker, who was one of our favorite teachers. Mr. Nonnemaker, who is currently a Blue Ridge Cable TV-13 football analyst, was also someone who liked to bust on Phillies' fans. Our poem was a way to get back at him.
I was given permission by Mr. Nonnemaker and Matt Wentz to take the moment to share a little bit of my past with my fellow readers today.
Here is the piece that was published in our high school newspaper, PHOENIX, back in 1993.
"Ode to Nonni"
It all started in October of 1993.
The Phils' first playoff berth since 1983.
Mr. Nonnemaker said the Phils would become Indian stew
Because the Atlanta Braves would tomahawk them in two.
Nonni believed the Phils would be under the gun.
When the Braves beat the Phils to take game one.
But they proved Nonni so incorrect
Taking game one to change his dialect.
Heading into the midst of the game,
The Braves trounced Greene making the fans boo.
Going to school the very next day,
We all wanted Nonni to stay far away.
The Phils had gotten pounded 14-3.
Nonni's wisecracks were soon to be.
Game three fell upon the city of Atlanta,
Which Phil's fans hoped for no need of Mylanta.
Down in Fulton County was not a pretty sight,
Because the Phils suffered a 9-4 defeat that night.
Nonni was laughing and saying the Phils should go home,
Because they would never make the trip to play at the Skydome.
In game four, with the Phils down two games to one,
The duo of Jackson and Williams got the job done.
Tying the N.L.C.S. Series at two games a piece,
I could head to school hoping to make peace.
With the most popular Phillies teaser,
Mr. Nonnemaker, Palmerton's old geezer.
With the last line, Nonni will make us pay
By saying the Phils will be blown away.
Both team headed into game five
Each hoping that they would survive.
The N.L. East champions jumped out to an early 3-0 lead.
But in the ninth, the Western champions made the lead begin to bleed.
The Braves came back with Mitch blowing the save.
With a 3-3 tie Atlanta fans began to rave.
To extra innings the game did go.
Where Lenny Dystra stole the show.
With a tremendous blow over the right-field wall,
The Phils won the game 4-3 and stood tall.
We all headed to Nonni in study hall,
Teasing him how the Braves were beginning to fall.
All Nonni could manage to say,
Was that the Phils got lucky that day.
Then for game six, the series went to the Vet.
It was a night Phils' fans were not to forget.
Aided by six runs and with Greene on the mound,
The "Phantastic Phils" were World Series bound.
The Phils pounded the Braves six to three,
Filling Phillies' fans with joy and glee.
The Phils had won the N.L. crown,
Knocking the defending champions down.
The win caused a big celebration down in Philly,
Phillies' fans were jumping for joy and acting silly.
Phillies' fans were partying and having fun,
Because the loveable, underdog Phils had won.
But back in Palmerton, Nonni was clattering his teeth,
Because Phillies' fans were giving him tremendous grief.
Mr. Nonnemaker, I have one thing to say,
The team you picked to finish last went all the way.