Right Field

Bill Belichick Is the Emperor of Ice Cream (Apologies to Wallace Stevens)

The Dynasty is dead now.

Call the roller of big cigars,

The muscular one, and bid him whip

In kitchen cups concupiscent curds.

Vince Wilfork has had his day. The linchpin of the Patriots’ meager defense has whipped the weakest of the curds of the AFC from Week 1, all the way back in September. The Patriots lost but three times in the regular season. Each time they lost, it was to a better football team. But, oh how they whipped the weak.

Let the wenches dawdle in such dress

As they are used to wear, and let the boys

Bring flowers in last month’s newspapers.

Did you see them in the stands? Well, not the stands, of course, but the luxury boxes. The trophy wives and the supermodel, all in their most flattering attire. They were surely there to be seen by the whole globe and needed to look so fine. Scurrying around them was an army of boys, the chattering classes of big-time sports. The newspaper columnists, once titans of the field, were overwhelmed by the all-sports television and radio talkers, who were, in turn, overwhelmed by the bloggers. So many are this morning trying to forget the paeans to Belichick and his minions that were so proudly published just weeks ago.

Let be be finale of seem.

The only emperor is the emperor of ice-cream.

How mighty the team had seemed. The triumphant return to playoff greatness was celebrated in every shanty north of Hartford. The destruction of the Broncos proved we were back, and the Ravens’ wide kick showed that God, or at least Mrs. Kraft’s spirit, was on our side. But now be has become the finale of seem. And what is, is another loss to the Giants. Bill Belichick is no dark lord. He is merely the emperor of ice cream.

Take from the dresser of deal,

Lacking the three glass knobs, that sheet

On which she embroidered fantails once

And spread it so as to cover her face.

The season is over now. Take down the banners hanging in Foxborough and use them as a shroud. Our excitement must be wrapped carefully in paper and stored away for another year. We have been spoiled here in the bitter north woods. Anything but ultimate victory no longer feels sweet. No second-bests console us. It is a funeral, not a wake. We do not wish to hear about the good times past. We can only see the season lying in front of us, dead.

If her horny feet protrude, they come

To show how cold she is, and dumb.

The flaws that were exposed when it mattered most had not been hidden from us. We knew our Love so well. We knew the secondary couldn’t stop good receivers. We knew that the running game was suspect. We knew Brady would press too hard. It doesn’t matter now, anyway.

Let the lamp affix its beam.

The only emperor is the emperor of ice-cream.

The brightest lights in the football world shone on the Patriots last night. The lamp affixed its beam. The shadows of mystique were driven back and all that was left was the ice cream.


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