had logo

When the tornado touches down, my father is still in the field.
                                    He gathers gloves and aluminum bats

                                                            into a mesh bag between third base

            and home. There is a sport to caring for what small things can’t
                        matter in the moment, to climb through the wind collecting

what is forgotten when the clouds cave-in. A schoolroom
                                    full of boys is shaken and emptied into the stirring grasp

                                                            of branches the gusts have not yet broken.

            With both hands over my head, crouching in the dark,
                        I am dragged by the bill of my cap up into the atmosphere.

My father is below. His arms full of baseballs, a pair of cleats.
                                    I spiral above the batter’s box, finding him between debris.

                                                            Those we love have an entire history

            of preparing for the storm. It is easy to forget
                        what caution precedes us after we are culled into the cyclone.

There are bay windows that will not receive the blunt end
                                    of the bat bundled into the bag. No baseball tears

                                                         through the diner’s roof, no coffee pot chipped.

            Somehow there is comfort in knowing so much remains
                        remarkably unaffected though terror may find us.