What is it that I’m doing
With all of this first-person revelry?
Stories of my experiences,
Poems from my perspective,
How am I worthy of such a public rehashing?

I’ve not done anything grand,
Nothing of fame,
Barely anything for myself,
So where do I get off writing about me?
I don’t know…

I went to school for a long time,
Somehow I survived it
To find a career in education.
My political views and religious bends
Have matured over the years

That’s interesting, right?
I’ve raised a family,
Been through the wringer
In a few ways,
Even grown to love Philadelphia.

You see, it’s the interest meter is rising,
No, I know, the Nielsen ratings are not so high
Where my life story is concerned,
But I hope the words spice it up a little
Taking you somewhere different.

Letting you see some of you in what I do
Have done, what I’m writing about,
Because maybe I trigger something you remember,
Something you have done, thought, or dream of
And you smile, laugh, or best of all cry.

That’s it right there,
Why I write in the first person so much,
I’ve got a lot of education, but I don’t know all that much
So I’m sticking to what I’m good at,
Figuring out me.

Many a coach
Waxes on the benefits
Of common goals and the life lessons
Learned when people compete
On a team.

Many a poet
Writes eloquently of the rewards gained
When a man tests his mettle
In the struggle of physical effort
And competition against others.

I like to think I’m both
Coaching once again
And hitting these keys in the Han-ee style of free verse,
Looking back, both the coach and poet
Have it right.

My time playing high school sports
Oozed plenty of sweat,
But more importantly squeezed from me
All environmental influence of the times
About who people are.

My teammates were friends
People to go to battle with,
People to break bread with,
People, friends,
Teammates.

I learned that opportunity comes in uncertain ways
But gift horse or not, opportunities should be taken
Because the world is a tough place
And it matters little who you are
Only that you seize the opportunities when they are presented.

I learned how fickle experience can be
One moment making life seem easy and fun
The next swatting at an ego with Tyson like efficiency.
The essence of competing is struggle
And learning to manage the experience is how we get better.

Coaches will rant, poets will weave stanzas of ahhh
And both know why sports participation is important
Learning to struggle brings us together
Creating bonds that cannot be understood
In isolated phone and tablet bound postures.

I owe a great deal to my coaches
Who set the laws that I learned to follow.
I owe a great deal to my teammates
Who showed me no favor, but allowed me to be part of the gang.

So are my lessons from basketball at LHS…