Softball is many things. Today, softball is a bird chirping.

I awoke this morning to the sounds of birds chirping. It’s a sound I know well. It signals the change of the seasons. When I heard them, they were spring. In my life, spring means the start of softball season. It’s what I’ve known for 20 years. This morning, hearing them, they triggered something unique in my heart. They reminded me of a part of my life that’s become lost to me. Full of rituals. Full of routines. This morning, I was reminded of one in particular…

Early mornings, I would rise in anticipation of another day of practice or a game. I’d watch the horizon slowly change. First, it would shade me grey, then, slowly, I would become pink as the sun would climb.

The smell of the dirt and the grass would walk its way into my nose, and then burrow into my heart.

The dew would sprinkle the grass, and it would sparkle like the diamond it outlined.

And birds would chirp.

We’d be trudging our equipment to the field where we’d sit in the damp grass, putting on our cleats, still raw from last night’s game. We’d talk mostly softball, or boys. Who am I kidding? No. We’d talk mostly food.

Still, birds would chirp.

We’d stretch our legs and feel the warm sun heat the turf field. It would bake our backs like sand on the beach.

Meanwhile, birds would chirp.

The birds chirping this morning brought me back to that time where softball rituals started each morning. Where chirping meant spring, and where spring meant softball.

If someone asked me if I missed it I would lie and say “Yes.” But “yes” can’t capture the truth. It can’t explain everything that’s missing now that it’s gone. Fortunately, softball is many things.

Today, softball is a bird chirping.






4 thoughts on “Softball is a Bird Chirping

  1. I love the repetition here. Not being a softball player myself the birds resonated with me. I miss the sounds of spring here in the land of always summer! Great first slice. Welcome to spring!


  2. This Slice literally took my breath away. I can’t believe you wrote this. Ha ha, that sounds terrible, but I had no idea you had such a talent for words!! This line: The smell of the dirt and the grass would walk its way into my nose, and then burrow into my heart – I’m going to write it in my own writer’s notebook so I can steal it someday. 🙂

    I have never played softball or any other sport for that matter, but this Slice… I GET it. Now, I totally get it.



  3. I love how our senses capture things and store them away and we don’t even realize their importance at the time. Thanks for taking us on the journey the birds chirping carry you along on – the smell of dirt and grass and all.


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