The PGA.com headline read “The Chip Heard ‘Round the World.’” The shot, of course, was Tiger Woods’ chip from behind the sixteenth green on the final day of the 2005 Masters. Art Spander, an Oakland Tribune’s golf writer, started his article:
“The images, so poignant, so enthralling, stay with us even now, months after they were created on that momentous Sunday in April.”
Now, even as the months have turned to years, I tried to permanently capture those images and reactions.
A Masters Chip for the Ages
From a difficult lie beyond
the steeply sloped sixteenth green
a steely-eyed Tiger sent his ball
to a spot far above the hole
the ball, coming crisply off his wedge,
flew low, bounced once
and rolled on a yard or two
until gravity took over,
causing it to turn sharply,
and start slowly down the slope
towards the hole, speeding up
then slowing again as it got closer.
All of a sudden, Tiger’s words,
it looked really good…
how could it not go in, and
when it stopped, a single turn short,
how did it not go in,
and all of a sudden it went in.
It was as if Tiger’s will
had given gravity an assist.
In your life, the tower announcer’s voice,
have you seen anything like that?
While around him, the patrons’ roar
rose rocket-like, fueled by sheer wonder.
This poem is among more than 100 golf poems, most from before 1930, that are include in my new book, Golf Course of Rhymes – Links between Golf and Poetry Through the Ages. The book is available at electronic bookstores such as Amazon, Barnes and Noble and Amazon UK.
Below is the video of the chip that inspired the poem.