Once a year, the primal high school ritual is interrupted
by pomp, frill, and a tiny, sparkling circlet.
Coach protests, but who can stop
the force of a thousand voices
with precedence on their side.

The battle’s triumphant hero boasts, “95 yards!
Sainty can kiss my ass!” then throws
his golden arm around his next big catch
knowing full well the reward she will bestow on him
before he must sneak back through his window,
still inhaling her lingering perfume.

He tosses his worn jacket on the couch.
As he walks in the door, a sigh steals
past his lips, despite his best defense.
He should be content with another W
in his already illustrious career.
Bracing himself, he calls, “honey, I’m home.”

I sit in the stands, alone
in the midst of a mob of screaming fans
watching numbers I no longer know.
Four years I devoted my life to this,
and now it all has faithlessly left me behind.

Time runs, and I remain standing in its dust
Is it all meaningless?
What do you do when home is no longer
Suddenly an ethereal peace fills my empty soul
with the One who always welcomes
me with open arms.
The dust settles. I belong.