There is no loneliness like a
gray park in autumn when you’re young,
in high school, with a history paper due Monday
and tests and SAT’s and girls
who won’t talk to you, girls
you want nothing more
than to hold in your arms.
A cold front has just arrived in Minnesota
and blown the trees bare.
Your friends are huddling at the far end
of the brown grass field.
If you could, you’d leave this place
and never come back.
But you’re the receiver because you’re fast,
and when the football somehow
finds its way into your arms
no one can touch you.