My Father on an Elevator With George Steinbrenner

Outside, in the slop,
horses run, glistening
with rain and sweat.


My father knows a guy
who has horses, a trainer,
and seats at club level.

Dad presses a button to go up,
and enters the car with three others.
Two who are bodyguards soon get off.
Now it’s just them inside, where
matter comes together with other matter.

Did Dad make bad wardrobe choices that morning?
No. Both wear sport coats, collared shirts, no ties.
Dad has on navy blue Ballys,
from his Puerto Rican honeymoon.
Got them shined at Lambert Airport,
tipped the guy a $2 bill.

But what does a Sox fan
say to The Boss in intimate quarters?


“I said nothing about baseball
and talked only about horses,
where he and his sister went to college—
Williams, Skidmore, etc.”
(My father a Dartmouth man himself.)
“He was very cordial.”


“I met a man who had
a horse running in the next race,”
he said, once home, as we played guess who.

“I asked him how his horses
were doing, but not about the failings
of his Japanese pitcher!”

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