Poetry and sports are not often combined. Kwame Alexander's The
Crossover shows that this is a pitiful state of affairs. The verses
convey the story beautifully and sparsely. The ones about games
practically sing with the rythym of the basketball court.
Twins Josh and Jordan are basketball stars. Their dad is a
player from back in the day. He's given Josh the nickname Filthy
McNasty. At first Josh doesn't care for the name.
"But, as I got older
and started getting game,
the name took on a new meaning.
And even though I wasn't into
all that jazz,
every time I'd score,
or steal a ball,
Dad would jump up
smiling and screamin',
That's my boy out there.
Keep it funky, Filthy!
And that made me feel
about my nickname."
Family discord sadly happens--even with twins. A new girl in
school starts taking up a lot of Jordan's time. He's acting really
strange. Josh is alone much of the time. A gesture of anger and
frustration makes the brothers even more estranged.
And then there's their father. His family has a major history
of heart disease. Only he won't stop eating doughnuts and other not
so good stuff. And he refuses to see a doctor. This becomes a source
of spousal contention.
Basketball fans and poetry affecianados will enjoy this lively
coming of age narrative.
On a personal note, New Years Eve was great. I read and ate candy
near the tree with my precious tuxedo cat purring on my lap. We saw
the ball drop. Unfortunately Eugene didn't get to because he was
A great big shout out goes out to all the fine folks who spent New
Years Eve plowing snow and restoring electricity.
Sent from my iPod