Poet Reflects on Family and a Trip to the World Series

October 25, 2007 at 6:50 PM EDT

KAREN ZABOROWSKI DUFFY, poet: My name is Karen Zaborowski Duffy and I live in Ventnor, N.J., which is just a couple of blocks from the Atlantic City line and a couple of miles from Atlantic City High School, which is where I have taught English for twenty years.

I grew up in Philadelphia, and every summer we would come down the Shore, as it’s called, which of course is the Jersey Shore, and one year I didn’t leave. I stayed.

Philadelphia is still just 50 miles away, and I still have a lot of ties with Philadelphia, and one of those would be the Phillies.

There was always a lot of baseball in my house when I was growing up, whether it was on the television or going to one of my brother’s Little League games, or my dad and his friends going over every single play, even my dad and my grandmother arguing over who was a bum.

Back in 1993, which was the last time the Phillies were in the World Series, we had gotten two tickets to each game and we were sharing them in the family, and Game 5 was my turn to take my daughter. She was just starting fourth grade at that time, and I was very conscious of the fact that it wouldn’t be long before she would lose interest in baseball and in going anywhere with me.

It was very exciting to be at a World Series game in Philadelphia. The enthusiasm in the stadium-the cameras, the crowd of thousands of people all come together on a weeknight to see a game.

LEXIE, daughter of Zaborowski Duffy: The game was so exciting because I was with my mom, but also just to be 10 years old and experience that. Veterans Stadium was on fire and to have it be midnight on a school night, like she says, it was a lot of fun and a fond memory.

KAREN ZABOROWSKI DUFFY: When I wrote the poem, all of this came together, and I was keenly aware of the importance of capturing moments, in poetry and in life.

World Series, Game 5

Even God, I think, is here,

so high up in the stands

with my ten-year old daughter and me

we can almost touch the X

from Schmidty’s old home run,

probably the two worst seats at the Vet

but right where the whole world

wants to be.

I let her drink real Coke,

eat Milky Ways and dance with strangers

at 11:30 on a school night and still

ninety minutes from home.

I took her sticky hand.

The Phillies and we are in control.

For now, the world has stopped worrying

about players who might be traded,

moods that might swing and miss.

There are no thoughts about new uniforms

and the boys who will wear them.

Tonight she is here and finds it easy

to love me for this end-of-season

home game.

We are those jumping red dots

in the center of the universe, my daughter

and me and a baseball game

that is perfect and no more meaningless

than anything else.