Clipping the Hedges (Ode to Spring)

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Credit: AP Photo

Hedges, clipped alive in spring
studying the heart of everything
Riding in from El Paso
Gunning out runners
Headed for a ring
Some say he can’t sing
Others say he can’t bring
his power to the plate
but haters, they’re going to hate
Yea, he’s had to wait
for far too long
but he never took the bait
Watch him crouch like a King
put out opposing stings
run his staff, grab his fate

Padre colors throughout the land
But only in Diego will we make our stand
It’s here we’re striking up the band
The fans providing a guiding hand
The boys will play to dominate
Eat the sun to illuminate
Yea, we know one day we’ll be great
If playing chess, we’d call it mate

Padre fans have had to wait
For far too long we’ve been second rate
Our turn is up around the bend
A slow train coming, heavenly sent
A gift which can’t be earthly bent
by the petty desires of those trying to rent
a Padre past, already spent
as sacrifice, part of Lent

It’s a simple twist of fate
that the Taco Train is running late
but just like the angelic Sharon Tate
we’ll be reborn under the Gaslamp Gate
Under the sign of Petco
the sign of Aries in April
O to provide magical thrills
Heal the sufferings of the spiritually ill

Like the infinite pounding waves
The many in need of being saved
Green shall lead us from this shallow grave
Make sure nobody misbehaves
It’s time to show the Show our show
As those in the know know they know
the unknown of a simple koan
Where does the end of a diamond go?
Why does a Padre friar glow?

In the Series, the Taco Train will bleed
this nation’s sins like the tumbleweeds
Heaven on earth born in a seed
Idiot winds found in a need
to destroy this life despite our heed
that the diamond doesn’t go it leads
We’ll sweep away those imperial Yanks
riding high in their media tanks
and their massive, mischievous Wall Street banks
We’ll be everyone’s favorites, even Tom Hanks’

The light is coming
with Jankowski running
The light is glowing
watch Margot throwing
From Solarte to Spangy, around the horn
To Myers, a child, busy being born
In the spring, I am always torn
Who is my favorite? Will he be adorned?
Padre fans, ever forlorn
Our players are like broken acorns
Every November we come to mourn
and scorn whoever wins the Series storm
But this year I won’t feel so worn
We are young, and bright, as fresh as the corn
Here come those silly young Padres
zipping around like a young Jim Zorn (old football reference)

Meet me in the morning when the rooster chews his gums
Say goodbye at dawn when the lover’s light is done
Hold me in the day when the news twists my soul
Kiss me in the twilight, cradle me in your bowl
Nobody will stand in the way of our Padres
Neither fake media, twitter or the sinister cadres
of gloom and doomers who don’t believe in spring bloom
and the way the Padres make the ladies go swoon
or the way the moon casts mystic light in June
or how Grant storms the South from the broadcaster’s booth
Come now, don’t be a Charger, uncouth
You too want to believe and to be soothed

From Dickerson to Schimpf to Luis and Clayton,
they’ll always battle with grit and with power
From Hand to Buchter to Brandon Maurer
Capp will cap the Captain’s Tower
of Babylon, we’ll smoke the skids
building our empire with the kids
Bethancourt opening our strategic eyelids
Our future up to the highest bid

162 games, the Battle of 1812
Win some, lose some, critics can go to hell
We should stand and shout when the games start with the bell
Think of Trevor whose change was a fluttering shell
One day they’ll write stories like William Tell
of the Taco Train beating up on the Sox and of Sale
We’ll sail down the Gaslamp in a winners’ parade
Taking shots of whiskey, or maybe of Gatorade

They’ll have to quell the populist swell
that’ll heal this town like a wishing well
Fowler and Siedler will wear the crowns
We’ll all dress snappy wearing the gold and brown
Espinoza and Quantril will be on the mound
Our runners racing round and round
Somebody write a song! Somebody make a sound!
The Taco Train is coming pound for pound

Take me out for an evening downtown
Let’s go to Petco so we can drown
our sorrows which are nationally renowned
Lower the ticket prices so we can come unbound
The time is coming, the clock is ticking
The center cannot hold, politics is tricking
It’s no time to hide, something is missing
Don’t piss it away while the world is disssing

every one of my silly rhymes
On Judgment Day, there shall be no crimes
Only Christos at the end of times
running past the third base sign
headed home to drink the finest wine
What’s yours is what’s mine, we’ll have to pay the fine
There’ll be a party at the end of the line
“Play Ball” they’ll be screaming in the eternal sunshine

They’ll throw the Dodgers at us as if we don’t know them
The Giants too, we’ll just go “Ahem”
Here come the Rocks looking like mountain men
The snakes will roll in losing their desert religion
Mine is to free all civilization
My mission since I was twenty going on ten
Lent is my sacrifice to God’s dominion
The green grass of spring, fused with sensimillon

My saves are Hoffy’s, my average is Tony’s
I slug like Nate, I pitch like Randy
Give me 17-foot walls and an old round swamp
Our exile ran deep in ol’ Murphy’s dump
I fight for you from the backside of Trump
I know what it’s like to discover a lump
This holy slow taco train shall get past the bump
Get us over this championship city-starved hump

I finish as I began like the Trinity
Catching my way to infinity
Hedges hedging my poetic bets
All bets are off, throwing out Mookie Betts
Deliver me from this apocalyptic tent
We will devour the New York Mets
Jingle-jangle like Dylan in the Met
Playing our kaleidoscopic trumpets
To bring down these walls of the holy remnant
To build up Doubleday’s sacrament

Like a sacrifice bunt I lay down for you
Just like a ball boy tangled up in blue
Every spring, a passage, so much to do
The Taco Train continually born anew
Shaking these Ma Rainey, Cactus League blues
We prepare ourselves as the chosen few

Manage it well like William Tell!
Ring those Famer Hoffman bells!
We’ll beat the hell out of Christopher Sale
ride with the dolphins out to the whales
Hail, hail! Hail, hail! The holy slow train!
(Make peace with your inner taco)
Here come the games!

(written to Blood on the Tracks)

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