Maybe it was those words from Walt Whitman, written so long ago, the same words his mother had loved and sung. Suddenly it was all connected. Suddenly it made sense. Suddenly he had words to say: “Anybody who wants to play ball can play.” (from The Aurora County All-Stars by Deborah Wiles)
If you love baseball, Walt Whitman, Americana, or good children’s literature, you should go ahead and read The Aurora County All-Stars by Deborah Wiles. It is charming. Yesterday’s quote came on the heels of a passage in which twelve-year-old House Jackson is surprised to learn that there was a time when some people in his county were not allowed to play organized ball because of their skin color. House has obviously never experienced this kind of prejudice and yet his own team’s first rule of play is “No girls.” Today’s quote is House’s Walt Whitman inspired shout-out of goodwill to end the exclusion of even the girls. Of course, all kinds of hilarity ensues when girls in tutus decide to join the sandlot team. More tomorrow….