Erratic Fire, Erratic Passion

Pasha Malla & Jeff Parker's exploration of poetic moments in sport press conference history was punished in 2015.

Pasha Malla & Jeff Parker

The content of postgame interviews and sports chatter is so often meaningless, if not insufferable. And yet there are athletes like Metta World Peace who transcend lame clichés and rote patter, who use language in surprising ways, who can be funny and shocking and insightful and alarmingly sincere — pure poetry. Muhammad Ali offered dazzling displays of lexical wizardry, and Allen Iverson's infamous "practice" rant shifted the postgame press conference from the banal to the absurd.

Featuring an introduction by award-winning sports writer Bethlehem Shoals, Erratic Fire, Erratic Passion is a celebration of these rare and exceptional moments. Various poetic forms and line-breaks highlight — or, in the words of Deion Sanders, "deem to set a candor on"— the sophisticated, sublime, and surprising performances of language made by professional athletes. (From Featherproof Books)

From the book

"Ford Tough"

Don Cherry


I was made fun of 'cause I go to church,

I'm easy to do it that way.

One guy - a pink - called me a jerk,

So I thought I'd wear that for him today.


"Is that the kiss of death, that they give like that?"

I was asked, so I asked why.

I said, "I'm your man," right off the bat,

A famous, good-looking guy.


I was called maudlin because I honor the troops;

I guess that's what they do around here.

Put that in your pipe you left-wing kooks -

D'you expect Ron MacLean to come here?

From Erratic Fire, Erratic Passion: The Poetry of Sports Talk by Pasha Malla & Jeff Parker ©2015. Published by Featherproof Books.