Half Ball – Poem by Seymour Shubin


We played what we used to call half-ball
Which involves cutting a regular pimple ball in half
So you couldn’t hit it too  far on a city street
Or driveway
Just far enough so you could get a hit
Or even a home run
He was a gentle boy, this boy, about two years older
Than the rest of us, maybe three.
Well, he played this one game in the driveway So full of life,
so when  a neighbor came to our door
The next day with word that he’d died
And no one knew why, not even the doctors,
Just went to bed and died, This kid with the same
First name as mine, which made it even worse,
But not as bad as when we’d drive past the cemetery
On our frequent trips
to New York to visit my eldest sister
And her family
And as we drove by I would think of him in there
With all those ghostly old people.
But then a couple of years later
They built a highway
That by- passed the cemetery
I was glad at first
Until I realized how much
More lonely he might be.

Posted in art music poetry, Famous Poets, Poetry Posts, Resident Poets, Seymour Shubin
Seymour Shubin
Seymour Shubin is the author of fifteen novels and more articles and short stories than he can begin to remember. His novels and stories have won numerous awards. 'The Captain', received the Edgar Allan Poe Special Award from Mystery Writers of America, and was also the subject of an essay in 100 Great Detectives. Another of his novels, 'Anyone's My Name', a New York Times' bestseller, and has been used as a text in university criminology courses. His short stories have appeared in a wide range of publications, ranging from such popular magazines as Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine to the literary Story and Potpourri, where one of his stories won the best-of-year award. A collection of sixteen of Shubin's tales were collected in 'Lonely No More', which was released in 2012. Other stories have been anthologized, and one of Shubin's stories -- 'The Cry of a Violin' -- was broadcast twice on the BBC, whilst 'The Good and The Dead' was collected onto six CDs by Books in Motion. His one nonfiction book was a commissioned biography of John B. Amos, the late founder of the insurance giant, AFLAC. Shubin was born and raised in Philadelphia, PA and is a graduate of Temple University. He and his wife, Gloria, live in one of the suburbs. They have two married children. His son, Neil Shubin, wrote the paleontology book 'Your Inner Fish'... which was shortlisted for the Royal Society Prize for Science Books in 2009.