“hockey night in buffalo” by Patrick Riedy

tuesday half an hour towards eight at night
i watched the sabres play winnipeg with my dad
and fall in love with hockey all over again

or maybe it is how simple sports make everything seem

 

it happened sometime between watching RJ and Hawerchuk give their thank-you’s
and seeing how much a single sword and crowd can nearly bring men to tears

 

the fact that my city is exponentially better for being hockey heaven
even though i’m not completely sold on the moniker
and some fans can’t give Miller a break
i realize that its moments like these i’ll miss the most
when my dad is no longer here

and i can’t listen to him talk about how much he knows about hockey
even though i used to force him to watch games with me

 

he will always tell me             all i need for proof is to ask Uncle Pete or Uncle Timmy
about the time he snuck into the Aud
to see whatshisname
the guy who invented the slap shot
play against the sabres in the mid 70’s

no wait             it was before the sabres were even a club
it must have been the 60’s
it was the old buffalo bisons

and did you know they had a pepsi bottle cap logo?
because the owner of the team owned a pepsi bottling company
i bet you didn’t know that did ya?

and boy            you know Danny Gare was a great
no one played as hard as him
but he had to
cuz he was a little guy
and that’s why i like the way that Gerbe kid plays
goes out and gives it his all every shift
dump and chase all day
pumps his little legs for 45 seconds at a time

 

tuesday two minutes to eleven
i’m still on that overtime victory high
and he is still sitting here waiting for the news
to see who won in the local elections today

 

i know he’s happy i’m home            for tonight
because he keeps looking over at me

 

wondering what i’m working on

and reminding himself what he is still working for

 


Profile: Patrick Riedy

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