De Stop-Heem-Short

Hail, Poetry

In honour of the Blue Jay’s making the playoffs, here is Wilson MacDonald’s ode to the shortstop.

De Stop-Heem-Short

I go me once to baseball game:

I laugh an’ den som’ more.

Eet was een Newark, on de day

She play wit’ Baltimore.


Dose baseball players dey were dumb:

Don’t know no ting at all:

Don’t know henough to start unteel

De hompire say, “Play ball.”


Dat hompire’s name ees Meester Fake:

‘E’s leetle man an’ slim.

I know hees name ees Fake, because

Dey all call “Fake” at heem.


But when ‘e say, “Play ball,” dey run

From Peeg-Pen on de right.

De peetcher com’, ‘e sweeng hees arm

Jus’ lak’ ‘e wanta fight.


De catcher ees all double up:

I guess eet ees ole age.

By gar, dey tink ‘e ees a bird

An’ put heem een a cage.


Dat catcher’s stomach mus’ be weak:

Dey cover eet wit’ pad.

Perhaps ‘e has de stomach ache:

I’m sorry for de lad.


De peetcher den ‘e trow de ball:

De man who hole de steeck

Don’ mak’ no try; ‘e let ball go.

By gosh! ‘e mak’ me seeck.


De hompire ‘e call out, “One strike.”

Dat hompire tole a lie.

I yell: “Dat man ‘e deedn’t strike,

‘E let de ball go by.”


Den Meester Fake ‘e say, “One ball,

Two ball, tree ball an’ four.”

But all I see ees dat one ball:

I can’t see hony more.


I tink dat hompire ‘e had drink

Before de game begun;

Else why should ‘e see four balls dere

Wen I see only one.


Next fellow sweeng and hit de ball

So hard I tink she sweat.

She went tree mile up in de hair:

I tink she’s going yet.


Dat crazy hompire yell, “Home run.”

‘E have an awful gall.

So heverybody seet right dere:

We doan’ run home at all.


I doan’ lak’ peetcher, catcher much:

De hompire ‘e haint fair.

Dat leetle stop-heem-short ees bes’

Of honybody dere.


De stop-heem-short, de man wat play

‘Tween third an’ second base.

‘E move as queek as water-bug;

‘E’s heverywhere de place.


Dey doan’ treat heem too well, dey doan’;

Geev’ heem no base: no, no.

Poor leetle feller wander roun’;

‘E have no place to go.


An’ den, although ‘e naiver try

To hurt heem hanyone,

Dey hit de ball right at hees head

For jus’ to see heem run.


De peetcher, bah, de catcher, bah:

De hompire—’e’s no sport.

But I com’ back here hevery day

T0 see dat stop-heem-short.

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