In recognition of National Youth Sports Week
Volume 1: Issue 1
By Scarlett, age 13, NC
The ball, the hoop, the court, the shoes
The crowd cheering loudly, never any boos.
The sounds of shoes squeaking,
The tick of the clock,
The feeling of letting you go,
And you come straight back to me
With a hard bang on the court,
I look down and there you are,
Sitting peacefully between my hands,
Ready to do it over and over again.
The swish of the basketball,
The sound of the whistle that ends it all
Fouls are called, travels, carries, and techs, too.
As time flies by, the excitement grows.
The crowd on their feet as the last shot goes,
And at the end of it all, hands are shook.
And the winners will look back at the game they took.
I absolutely loved this poem and how therapeutic basketball is for you. The way you described dribbling is so accurate. The ability to let go of the ball, knowing it always comes right back to you in the same spot, is so reassuring and builds confidence in you. Ball handling can become boring and repetitive, but you’ve managed to turn it into a peaceful, sacred, and mindful experience. Everyone, take notes from Scarlett—you should dribble with intentionality and purpose, and she most definitely demonstrates the power in that.
Also, reading your poem brought back all the feels. I felt like I was on the court playing again in front of an energizing crowd. I felt the rush of adrenaline and competitiveness run through my blood again. You created so much imagery that your words gave me chills and brought back nostalgia, joy, and reflection. Thank you for this gift.
Your words remind me of how much appreciation I have for the game that has allowed me to experience life to the fullest. An orange basketball has given me so many amazing opportunities to travel the world, positively impact the lives of countless individuals, and become a better person. I am so grateful for that and for you.
Thank you for creating this work of art. The world needs your contributions because they matter. You matter. I am so proud of you. Keep writing. Keep shining. Keep doing whatever brings you peace and love.
With abundant love,
Author of Help My Husband Is Hardly Home and former pro basketball player