I promise I had this completely written before the release of T. Kyle's pessimistic, comprehensive smorgasbord, so I guess it falls to me to be a voice of optimism and good 4th of July cheer. No, I did not type that last sentence with a straight face, and yes, I did write the bulk of this poem around 5am under the influence of a broken AC. Having tried my hardest to recreate Coleridge's state of mind when he wrote "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner," I present to you this 4th of July/off-season tribute to golf, goofiness, and the pursuit of a Green Jacket. And fireworks. Because I love fireworks. With apologies to Coleridge:
It was the hottest summer's day;
the temp topped at one oh three.
On this long, hot day of shimmering heat,
I was as hot as could be.
My buddies' beers were opened wide,
and playing were the kids.
From guests to pets with sweat were wet
as was my Bulldog lid.
I told the beer within my hand,
"Another ‘ship come free.
Thanks to a filed-off serial mark,
we've lost our star RB."
Out of the edge of my peevish eye,
I saw the Honored Guest.
He plays his game with a child's glee,
and at the Masters, he was best.
The Honored Guest pulled up a tree;
he clearly did hear me.
What could I say to that great man
who drove the General Lee?
The Honored Guest--G on his chest--
flicked his eyes up to my hat.
Would he speak? Would I have the chance
with Bubba to chew the fat?
"Higher and higher the players get,
‘til Coach Richt must kick them off..."
Here did I opt my speech to stop,
lest he at my grumbling scoff.
But kind and amiable was he
whose drive is long and strong;
who strikes with overtaking swings
as the South cheers him along.
"God bless you, fellow Dawg," he said,
"But don't think about our loss.
Rember Lou, who on hole two,
did shoot an Albatross.
"Hole after hole, hole after hole,
through bogeys and through birdies,
the idyll of the National
could not to ruin lure me.
"Birdies, birdies everywhere,
Lou's lead on me did shrink.
Birdies, birdies everywhere,
not one dropped in the drink.
"Oh, what a day! Augusta took
her toll on old and young.
And yet, like a boss, the Albatross
I from my neck it flung.
"There passed a hairy time when I
was blocked in by the trees.
Yet from the pines I drew my lines
that only I could see.
So, looking greenward, I let fly-
just God, my club, and me.
"At first the ball--it seemed so small--
got lost up in the sky.
I crouched and slouched and looked at last
and tracked it with my eyes.
"A speck, a dot, a jot, a spot!
The green it neared and neared.
A crazy way it turned and veered,
a real Bugs Bunny shot.
"I sank the putt and thanks did pray,
and, like a soothing balm,
around my neck, no Albatross,
but the arms of my dear mom.
"Football! It is a lovely sport,
Beloved from coast to coast!
To Coach Mark Richt applause be given;
may Grantham's D make offenses riven
and conjure Russell's ghost.
"Some silly players on the team
will not too long remain,
but signing day will fill anew
the roster racked with pain.
"'Who was he?' they'll say, "Was he a Dawg?"
of him who made Coach cross.
We need more guys who are more wise,
not another albatross."
"But a Dawg in the hand
is worth two verbal vows,"
I said, frustration showing.
He knew where I was going,
but there was a loud "Kapow!"
The fireworks, they had begun,
they were a heavenly sight!
The pinks and greens their course did run;
their flames lit up the night.
We made to stand; I shook his hand,
as we made to depart.
Into the silence did I ask
the question on my heart.
"I love a blog known as ‘Dawg Sports'
whose members make weekly podcasts.
Would you tell them your golf story
for one of their weekly broadcasts?"
"Farewell, Farewell! Just time will tell
if I can stop on by."
He drank his coke and through the smoke
of fireworks said his goodbyes.
I went like one who'd had great fun
on Independence Day.
I rode home with a sober man
and woke looking to op'ning day.
Pictured: Phil Mickelson continues the search for his ball on hole 4.