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Poetry Archives

This archive contains every poem that has been published on Football Poets. They are listed ten-per-page in reverse chronological order so the most recent poems appear first. Click or tap the arrows in the corners of the page to navigate between pages. It's easier to use the search form below to find a specific poem.

Blank.

I’m doing it again –
a striker envisages an empty net
and takes aim

I espy a blank sheet
and set to with my pen

the striker
often scores

as do I
but I score out
repeatedly

more often
than I leave gems
or le bon mot

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It’s a generational thing

Yet have I to acquaint myself, with Spotify…
An absurdity to those
Who know only of Conte and Kante,
Morata and Hazard

Whereas I
I hark back
To the days of Kunta Kinte,
Osgood, Cooke,
Bonetti, Tambling
Just one of the reasons
Why I have no truck with shirts
Supporting gambling

Bugbears have I many…
“Curmudgeon” could grace my back
Yet I don’t take delight
Every time a sucker gets the sack

Spot if I
Anyone ever connected with my great team
I follow the link
To see howso-endeth, their cosmic dream

Apprentices of yesteryear
Loanees of today
Grounsdmen, medics, stewards
Or those yet to play….

Whereas my kith and kin
Careth not a jot
Unless someone is front and centre,
Of social media renown,
And then they only wish
For a startling comedown

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Unbelievable!

Look Chris Kamara
There’s a pigeon on the pitch
Unbelievable!

Ianthe Exall January 2018

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Orange leather footballs in the snow

Orange leather footballs in the snow,
when struck with force from some attacker’s toe,
would sting but you could never let it show.

Arctic troughs could change the status quo
and games that went ahead would always go
with orange leather footballs in the snow.

Orange leather footballs in the snow
have often laid a poor defender low
when suffering a point-bank, volleyed blow.

Half-time Bovril, warming hands, sipped slow
would make the cheeks of chilly children glow
like orange leather footballs in the snow.

Orange leather footballs in the snow
spent many matches pinging to and fro,
for anyone with any sense would know

that snow-clad pitches always used to slow
the daisy cutters, so no-one kept low
those orange leather footballs in the snow.

Yes, orange leather footballs in the snow
were conjured with by Greavesie, Best and co
at temperatures of five or six below,

a normal sight, just forty years ago
yet nowadays, alas, you will see no
bright orange leather footballs in the snow.

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Rite of Passage

There are moments in a boy’s life- days that linger and ferment forever in the mind:
Growing up; leaving the pencil case and the lunch box behind.

The first time a razor slides smoothly across the pizza-dappled chin;
The realisation you don’t always have to win… to win.

The sad slow penny drop that figures out the Tooth Fairy; the Easter Bunny- both Little White Lies
And your Dad drinks the sherry; scoffs the half dozen mince pies.

First girlfriend; first kiss; first wage packet in your hand
First car; first child… as the boy becomes a man.

But the day after which life would never be the same
Was the very first time my uncle took me to my very first game.

Midweek fixture: pitch lit up like a birthday cake
Took my breath away; spent the rest of the night awake…

Reliving every kick and chase, arms aloft above the covers at the memory of every goal.
Realising I had found the thing that would delight; frustrate; and which made me whole.

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So Long, Tony, And Thanks For All The Draws

It started off so promisingly
but, like so much these days,
it simply wasn’t built to last.

Too many matches set up not to lose
too many games without a shot…
on target; no reflection of our glorious past.

Best squad in decades, but still
success is measured in finishing… seventeenth.
No decent Cup run since… the beginning of Time.

The pundits say we’ve been punching above our weight
for years. How long before that becomes the deserved position
of a talented bunch of players, playing in their prime?

Had my fill of trying to simply limit the loss;
eventually the buck had to stop… with the Boss.

Had my fill of dreading looking for the final score
so, so long Tony, and thanks for all the draws.

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Pre-Season Friendly

New season; hopes fresh as new boots; wild boozy talk of promotion on the terraces.
Hushed whisperings of extravagant signings; rumours of wunderkinds
Unearthed in the reserves… just waiting to push
For a first team place; passed down the line like Chinese whispers.

The air is crisp and full-brimmed with the aroma of new programme.
The foil glitters in the corner of the preciously-clutched ticket
Better than the golden one that got you into a chocolate factory.
The first throaty growls of an out-of-practice chant rise up from the back of the cheap seats.

July sunshine rests its phoenix-wings lightly, on the long rows
Of mainly upturned seats; the players emerge…
Make little sprints; take speculative aims at goal that float…
Harmless as a balloon, over the bar

To be returned by a ball boy-
Thrown back like a bowler, overarm and with a hint of spin.
They’re all out now: to fanfares and ticker-tape…
The ref puts his whistle to his pursed lips…

And so it all begins again.

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See you next week, Trev?

Nil-Nil and there’s only been five torturous minutes on the clock
But it already looks like their defence is solid as the proverbial rock.
I’ve got a nasty feeling about our chances today-
Should have gone to the pub with the lads; should have stayed well away.

It’s Nil-Nil at half time- what do you make of it, Trevor?
We could play till the moon turned to blue and white stripes, mate; it’ll be nil-nil forever.
The fans broke into a chant that time we crossed the halfway line,
While the Gaffer’s incandescent (think he’s definitely in line for a fine).

Nil-Nil still and we’re well into the second half…
My feet are freezing- can’t feel a thing below the calf!
The players should be paying us to watch this flippin’ tripe
Oi! There’s kids down here, mate, who don’t want to hear language that ripe!

I told you before kick-off- don’t you remember what I said?
The closest we’ve come to scoring was that shot into Row Z.
Come on, let’s go- it’s already the last minute of added time.
The way they’ve played today… I tell you, it’s a crime.

Hold on… what a ball! He’s put him clean through!
He’s only gone and scored! Just like I told you!
One-Nil to the Albion- game over! And what about that pass?
See you next week then, Trev? Absolutely- that was sheer class!

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BECKHAM’S FREE KICK BRINGS ENGLAND INTO THE WORLD CUP

The English fog sets in the sky.

For qualification
in front of the blue forest
Beckham has taken
the Excalibur sword
out of the stone and the steel
shines on his leg.

While he awaits
the whistle of hostilities
in the forest he sees
blue Greek shadows
following every rose
that attempts to bloom alone.

When the whistle sounds
one only darkness awakes
breaking the tombstone
built 9 meters in front–

His saber caresses
a silver bent in the sky
glittering a plated path
through out the day:

The ball daring dawn
ran atop the perfect depth
hacking the bay and ward
and slashing the jugular of the net.

The goal bleeds.
Like dying inertia
Greek navy shadows
are turned to ghosts.

One only rosebush
of many Britain buds
blooms on the field:

Unbent, an English vapor ship
sails across the grandstands.

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ROBERTO CARLOS CURVED GOAL

They built a medieval
French castle out of the area
and a carnival became silent
when the ball was placed
upon the grass.

Roberto Carlos set
a horizon in his leg,
figured the route of the west,
tasked for the
urges of sudden torsion,
grew fangs and
hunger in his bullet,
conjured the sun
plunging down after midday,
produce no smirk,
no grease, no foretaste,
gave steps back,
stood and waited.

He heard the whistle
from the daybreak bird,
ran and shot a ball
–with his sabre left foot–
into attested life.

A ball convoking
one Saturn ring,
curving its pith,
hissing in winds,
parting quotients
and entering back
to break all stringency,
all game set logic,
all probability.

A ball twisting
the world and stadium
–like a gyring planet–
before finishing up
with the galloping
of a thousand horses
in the disturbed net.

When the ball lost all life
and fell inside deceased
upon the grass,
the team of the rooster
had then lost too,
too many feathers.

Plucked
they sang to no dawn.

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Source: http://footballpoets.org/poems/