Erratic Fire, Erratic Passion

Erratic Fire, Erratic Passion

Sports chatter is often meaningless. Yet some athletes transcend the lame clichés and rote patter to offer something sophisticated, surprising, and sublime–something like poetry. Using various poetic forms and line-breaks, Erratic Fire, Erratic Passion highlights these unique performances of language by a select group of professional athletes, from Muhammad Ali’s dazzling displays of lexical wizardry to Alan Iverson’s infamous “practice” rant, which elevated the post-game press conference from the banal into the realm of the absurd. Also included here are the words of R. A. Dickey, Mark Gonzales, Woody Hayes, Anna Kournikova, Metta World Peace, Danica Patrick, Deion Sanders, Mike Tyson, and Zinedine Zidane, as well as lesser-known figures from cricket, curling, cycling, monster truck driving, racquetball, and many other sports.

Orlando Weekly Top Ten Books of 2015


“There are many who refer to sports as poetry in motion, and there are some who argue that all conversation is a living form of poetry. These are both imperfect metaphors. But here is a book that takes the literal language of sport and converts it into the actual structure of poetry, and–sometimes, almost by accident–the result is actual perfection.” -Chuck Klosterman

“Athletes speak in their own language. In the hands of writers Jeff Parker and Pasha Malla, those words become poetry. See for yourself.” -Ben Osbourne, Editor-in-Chief, SLAM Magazine

“You don’t have to share my enthusiasm for verse and the athlete’s vocation to absolutely adore this book. These poems smack you in the face, challenging our fascination with fame while showcasing the lyricism of our language as it makes, and loses, meaning. Thoughtful and hilarious at every turn, this book scores off the charts. It’s perfection” -Erica Dawson, author of The Small Blades Hurt

“Parker and Malla, a Globe Books columnist, find insight, beauty and sensitivity in the words of Don Cherry, Mike Tyson, John McEnroe and a team’s worth of professional athletes. A strange and fascinating literary experiment.” –The Globe and Mail

“In the wrong hands, this concept could be cheesy and awful, but Malla and Parker carry it off to great effect — their handling of athletes’ words is careful and respectful, and the results are surprising: profound, funny, poignant and occasionally beautiful.” -Tom HawkingFlavorwire

“…hilarious and sometimes inspiring…” -Gary Thompson, The Philadelphia Daily News

“The best thing ever.” -Stephen Brunt, Sportsnet The Fan 590 

“A must have…” –SLAM Magazine

Publisher Page:

Featherproof Books


Erratic Fire, Erratic Passion at the New York Daily News



“One Big Lie That I Repeated A Lot of Times” by Lance Armstrong
“Practice” by Allen Iverson
“I Wasn’t Going Very Fast, But Unfortunately I Hit a Few Things” by Tiger Woods
“Kerrigan V. Harding” by Tonya Harding (ft. Nancy Kerrigan)


“From the Planet Lovetron” by Darryl Dawkins
“How Beat Up Are You?” by Kevin Garnett
“I Love Me Some Me” by Terrell Owens
“I, Best” by George Best

CBC Books

Ford Tough by Don Cherry


The Philadelphia Daily News

CBC Books


Ball Don’t Lie

NBC Sports

The Poetry Foundation

Sports Illustrated