Poetry News

Tailgating with Lawrence Ferlinghetti

By Harriet Staff

It's hard not to love this year's San Francisco 49ers. They're scrappy. They find a way to win. This isn't lost on Lawrence Ferlinghetti who, while not the biggest fan of football, especially today's football, has taken a liking to the Niners, who square off with the New York football Giants Sunday evening. Ferlinghetti has quite the sports background, as it turns out. From this New York Times article:

Having given up watching football about five years ago because it had grown too violent and far less interesting than baseball and soccer, sports he finds much more poetic, Lawrence Ferlinghetti stumbled into watching the second half of the 49ers’ victory over the Saints last weekend.

He was charmed all over again.

“That was the greatest end of a game I’d ever seen,” Ferlinghetti said in a telephone interview, proclaiming himself a renewed fan of the 49ers, at least while their playoff run lasts. They will host the Giants on Sunday in the N.F.C. championship game.

Later, he weighs in on his problems with the game.

“Seriously, they have to do something to change the basic rules of the game,” he said. “Too many of the players are getting concussions. It’s murder out there. A couple of years after they retire it all catches up with them.

“I prefer European soccer. It’s much more interesting than American football. It’s like chess when you really pay attention to it. The more you know about it, the more interesting it gets. Football is just not that interesting. Every time they line up, it’s going to either be a run or a pass. They stop all the time. In soccer, they never stop.”

He finds a poetry similar to soccer’s in baseball. “It’s another game where the more you learn, the more interesting baseball gets,” he said.

For more, including his prediction for the game, make the jump.

Originally Published: January 23rd, 2012
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