Joseph Bathanti is former Poet Laureate of North Carolina (2012–14) and recipient of the 2016 North Carolina Award for Literature. He is the author of ten books of poetry, including “Communion Partners;” “Anson County;” “The Feast of All Saints;” “This Metal,” nominated for the National Book Award, and winner of the Oscar Arnold Young Award; “Land of Amnesia;” “Restoring Sacred Art,” winner of the 2010 Roanoke Chowan Prize, awarded annually by the North Carolina Literary and Historical Association for best book of poetry in a given year; “Sonnets of the Cross;” “Concertina,” winner of the 2014 Roanoke Chowan Prize; and “The 13th Sunday after Pentecost,” released by LSU Press in 2016. His novel, “East Liberty,” won the 2001 Carolina Novel Award. His novel, “Coventry,” won the 2006 Novello Literary Award. His book of stories, “The High Heart,” won the 2006 Spokane Prize. “They Changed the State: The Legacy of North Carolina’s Visiting Artists, 1971–1995,” his book of nonfiction, was published in early 2007. His more recent book of personal essays, “Half of What I Say Is Meaningless,” winner of the Will D. Campbell Award for Creative Nonfiction, is from Mercer University Press. A new novel, “The Life of the World to Come,” was released from University of South Carolina Press in late 2014. Bathanti is the McFarlane Family Distinguished Professor of Interdisciplinary Education & Writer-in-Residence of Appalachian State University’s Watauga Residential College in Boone, N.C. He served as the 2016 Charles George VA Medical Center Writer-in-Residence in Asheville, N.C., and is the co-founder of the Medical Center’s Creative Writing Program.

Larimer Field

Before every game, before they hit us infield, the coaches yelled, “Line up,” and both teams, twenty-eight Little Leaguers, formed a skirmish, from the plate, down the left field line until it ended at the cyclone fence on Lenora Street where the old Abruzzese who didn’t speak English, and didn’t know baseball, except DiMaggio, sat …

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