“Home” by Ken Burns

It’s a beautifully designed game.  Timeless, but always changing. It’s a game in which the defense always has the ball; and a game in which every player is measured by the ghosts of all who have gone before.

 

For more than 150 years, baseball has been a mirror of the complicated country that gave it birth.

 

From California to the New York islands, through good times and bad, through wars, depressions, and civil strife, it has entertained us, it has inspired us, and sometimes, it has even transformed us.

 

We pass it down from mothers to sons, fathers to daughters, as every generation invests itself in the sweet hope of springtime and endures the painful realities of fall.

Its essential dimensions never change, yet nothing ever happens the same way twice. It is a game in which the person scores, not the ball; where the objective, always, is to come home.

Home, where no asks where you come from or who you voted for.

Home, where all season long, we congregate to cheer and plead, laugh and cry in the magnificent cathedrals of our game – the places, the poet Donald Hall says, “where memory gathers.”

 

Home, where every October, baseball’s greatest stars do battle.

 

Nothing in our daily life offers more of the comfort of continuity, the powerful sense of belonging, and the freedom from time’s constraints than does our National Pastime.

 

It is the place we always come back to – home.

 

 

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