Two boys uncoached are tossing a poem together,
Overhand, underhand, backhand, sleight of hand, everyhand,
Teasing with attitudes, latitudes, interludes, altitudes,
High, make him fly off the ground for it, low, make him stoop,
Make him scoop it up, make him as-almost-as possible miss it,
Fast, let him sting from it, now, now fool him slowly,
Anything, everything tricky, risky, nonchalant,
Anything under the sun to outwit the prosy,
Over the tree and the long sweet cadence down,
Over his head, make him scramble to pick up the meaning,
And now, like a posy, a pretty one plump in his hands.

Analysis, meaning and summary of Robert Francis's poem Catch


  1. joe says:

    I think this is a very good poem. I like it a lot. The only thing i don’t like is the comparison to baseball, even though i play baseball i am ashamed that all of these girly poets comare to baseball. It is a very manly sport and i am very dissapointed

  2. Imelda Blassingame says:

    This is a very clever poem well written by a poet named Robert Francis. The poem “Catch” can be compared to a baseball because any poems can be tricky and full of meanings. He wanted the reader to think hard about his poem. The last two stanza refers to any readers “Over his head, make him scramble to pick up the meaning, And now, like a posy, a pretty one plump in his hands”. Poems are like baseball games; throw different words and outwit the readers’ knowledge.

  3. Bryce says:

    I recently encountered this poem in my english class and I wanted to know more about it. Since there were not any comment here, I just wanted to post my point of view. I believe that this poem is about the importance of interpreting poetry. . .Hence the name “Catch”. I think that the baseball game is symbolic of the relationship between a poem and its audience, or either the poet and the reader.

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