Weekly Poems: a Double From the ‘Mets Poet’

Frank Messina; photo by Christian HansenFrank Messina, also known as the “Mets Poet,” is the author of four books of poetry, including “Full Count: The Book of Mets Poetry,” released in April, and “Disorderly Conduct,” published in 2002. His poetry concentrates on larger themes — love, struggle and war — but he is best known for poems about baseball fanaticism, particularly for the New York Mets.

“Most people don’t think of baseball as a typical poetry topic, but it has everything in human nature that makes for great writing,” Messina told the New York Times in a 2007 profile. “It has victories and failures and struggles and angst.”

In time for the World Series, we present two of Messina’s poems:

Apology to a Television Set

You have withstood
long years of physical and verbal abuse
inflicted by my own hands, tossed shoes, beer cans
Chinese food containers
there were times I kicked and cursed,
hoisted you over my shoulder
and tossed you through the window
you came back
delivering me good news;
how great the team was doing,
how it was only a matter of time
we’d clinch the division
one night, with my mouth
stuffed with beer, pastrami and vulgarity
I once again turned on you,
hoisted you over my shoulder
and tossed you through the window
this time you were taken away by another man
who tossed you into the back of a garbage truck,
taking you to a place where broken dreams,
failed seasons and abused television sets
are buried for eternity

New Television Set

You’re very lucky!
The salesman from Sears
bolted you to the wall
and said it would take
a very strong and angry person
to rip you off the hinges,
I think you’ll be around a while,
After all, we are seven games ahead of the Phillies
with only seventeen games left to play


To learn more about Messina, visit his Web site, www.spokeface.com.