THE UMPIRE

The umpire

is

a large

man. He wears

oversized

gray

pants. He has

two black bags

hanging

from

his

belt, one

on each hip.

He pulls a new

ball

from

one of the

bags

when

a pitch

is fouled.

And like someone

else’s father,

he

rests

a gentle, impartial

hand on the lonely

catcher’s

back.