Lunch Poem for Peter Laughner Who Died Young

Lunch Poem for Peter Laughner Who Died Young
John C. Stupp

He wanted
to bang out lines
of poetry
on an old typewriter
every day
at lunch time
like Frank
for as long as he could
aiming for 57 days
to beat Joe DiMaggio’s
hitting streak—
we were talking
at the Scene’s old offices
I forget now what street
but it started to rain
wind barreled in
there were many waves
as the lake clouded over
signifying something
I never saw him again
but I didn’t know it—
on the way back
I passed Municipal Stadium
in the wipers
adrift like an abandoned ship
where Ken Keltner
and the Indians
took hits away
from 70,000 fans—
July 17, 1941
zero hour
the night
deep as the mitt
at the end of Joe’s tunnel—
the stands
now a decrepit saloon
a lunch poem
with song and dance men—
he would have said
that’s Cleveland for you

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