Greg Baysans


Sex is the closest activity I know to writing poetry –
spontaneous and familiar at the same time, or
cooking maybe. A recipe then: tonight I'll add
a little chicory, a little chicanery, a little cannery
covered with cold rain and chicken shit. I'm tired
and can't get onto that bunk bed tonight but
want to get there because that may be where
there's a bridge to the plateau I'm looking for,
not this new-found one I enjoy some but,
as I said, am tired of. Blue body builders are not
company nor imagined visits to Braque galleries
with Scissor Sisters and Vonneguts enough.
No. It's baseball that's the best metaphor for poetry.
A long season, most games are barely memorable,
but once in a while the game's a gem – say a no hitter.
Is the poet the baseball season or the relief pitcher
warming up in the sixth inning for an appearance in
the eighth? Or is he the batter trying for a home run?
Even in an ordinary game, every move counts,
the moment as it happens, suspense, spontaneous
familiarity where anything can happen next.
I could start again. I could erase the above and start
again. Or I could repeat the start again but not
erase it all and start again or I could strike out looking.


Greg Baysans, former editor and co-founder of The James White Review, is a North Dakota native now in Portland, Oregon. His poetry has appeared in OYEZ Review, Coe Review, Plankton, and the anthology Poetic Voices Without Borders (Gival Press,2005).  His essay on poet Harold Norse is archived at