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.

Glory be!

Glory be the days
When we were young
And fun
Was on the menu

Glory be the days
When boots were grabbed
And anywhere at all
Was the venue

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wee Salty

It’s always interesting
A National team appointment, north of the Border
Bringing with it, huge potential for disorder
For there’s always a focus, the ask: Blue or Green?
Or been down South, lately, or since teen?

But for once
I believe they have chosen shrewdly
They’ll improve all round, without turning crudely
We’ve seen his quality, for he’s a canny lad
Exceptional at the Bridge, the best full-back to be had

And his coaching, was quality too
Totally improving, the prized Chelsea crew
It’s not often, that the Scots will all concur
To back someone of Salty burr

But I confidently predict:
Chanting soon, to roll around Hampden Park:
“There’s only wan Stevie Clarke!”

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There’s only one Archie
The Prince of Preston
The Earl of Derby
The Sheriff of Nottingham
Wispy haired , with deft of touch
The King of Scotland
when he slayed the Dutch
There’s only one Archie.

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When Seasons End

It could have been so different
It could have gone our way on the night
but still in the hindsight of reflection
a season spent punching above our weight
and a season lived without fear
is something
to be grateful for

but still it’s hard
in a jumping South Stand
drumming with the lads
on a beautiful clear night
high on this hill
to be down to ten men again and chasing shadows
where vegan sausages join the menu
where crammed fans stand on three sides
while sheep graze oblivious in the field beyond

but still it’s progress
the Play Offs can wait for another year or so
and let’s face it bottom line
Tranmere were better than us
we go again

I could bang on and wax lyrical
on a ref who forgot we were playing too
or our one time talisman and hero
but now pantomime villain
James Norwood
the queue for chips
or even how Mike Dean
the maverick man in the middle
from another few levels up
yes that Mike
the one we loved to loathe
standing there on that terrace rail
pumping the air screaming “off off off”
doesn’t sit right …
but i’ll leave that to the conspiracy theorists out there
and leave you with the song we sang all night
the one we’ll sing again and again
come August and beyond
’cause that’s what fans do
when seasons end
and when new ones begin

the club up on the hill
the little village team
from Barrow down to Eastleigh
now we’re in the Football League
Mark Cooper and Scott Lindsay
The fields of Nympsfield Road
We’re following the Rovers
Wherever they may go…

Allez Allez Allez
Allez Allez Allez

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For John Summerbee


I knew of Mick and I knew of Nick,
But I didn’t know of your existence,
Until early one morning on the number 46 bus,
When I was reading a Swindon Town programme.

It was back in 1992,
And you told me that Nicky was your nephew,
And I looked at you, someone I had never met or seen before,
And I asked you the next obvious, but risky question:
And it turned out that, yes, you were a boyhood hero’s brother,
You were the brother of Buzzer:
You were Mick Summerbee’s brother!

And it was the best conversation I have ever had on a bus
With someone I had never met before,
It was electric empathy and just the ticket,
As I told you of how I had seen best mates Mick and Ernie Hunt,
Grave-digging, back in the close season maximum wage early 1960’s,
When I was train spotting on Swindon Junction’s Milk Bank,
And how I missed some important engine numbers,
Just so I could watch them walk down the street to the café,
And how Mick and Ernie and Donald Rogers were my idols,
And how Mick had given up his time to coach Swindon Boys,
And had actually passed the ball to me in training,
And I didn’t want to clean my boots for a week, oh no,
And all this came out in a stream of consciousness,
And at no point did I ask about you, who you were,
As a person, as an individual, as John Summerbee,
As Mr. John Summerbee.
But it didn’t bother you,
And we always said hello in the streets or on the ‘bus,
Or when out walking the dogs in the valleys and fields,
Or having our hair cut in Summerbee’s salon.

But I knew nothing of your boyhood, until one Christmas,
When I read Colin Shindler’s book,
And it’s then I read of your dad, George,
And his struggles to make it as a footballer,
The dream move from Aldershot to Proud pre-war Preston,
Going sadly wrong, with wage cuts and wage slavery
And demoralising constant reserve team football:
Obscurity instead of fame, the struggle to make ends meet,
The drop down the divisions, as the body slowed down,
The youthful dream of stardom turned to non-league dust,
While your mum, Dulcie, coped with all the moves
And temporary homes of a travelling journeyman footballer.

And I read of your real life as John, your dad’s favourite son,
In whose shadow, Mick nervously walked,
For you were the better footballer and cricketer,
Until you were shattered by George’s early worn out death,
All dreams ruined at the tender age of just forty.
It’s then you turned your back on sport, and used your other talents,
For you were a star carpenter and joiner, too;
And even though I never met your dad,
And have only seen the photographs and read of him in a book,
The handsome dapper young man in his hand cut suits,
With shoes as shiny as a new pin, that you could see the faces in,
I see you in Stroud, immaculately turned out,
And now I know that I am not just looking at Mr. John Summerbee –
But I am also looking at George’s favourite son,
Walking in no one’s shadow, but his own and his dad’s.

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The Whole Stand Is On Fire.Bradford – Lest We Forget 11.05.85

“the whole stand is on fire” he cried upon my radio
but how it started to this day we still may never know
and who here can imagine the fear the heat the pain
but pray that such a day as this will never dawn again

what should have been a joyous game promotion celebration
claimed lives of fifty six that day and shocked this sorry nation
and in that dark inferno blaze too horrible to dream
lessons learned will not replace the lives that should have been

as bravery and tragedy unfurled before our eyes
where fans risked life and limb and more to save so many lives
so hard to not let anger grow at things we can avoid
nor find a way to measure the depth of all destroyed

I used to be nostalgic for lovely wooden stands
those ancient crumbling terraces that stretched across these lands
the rusty turnstile mayhem and big crowd anarchy
that bumbled on for years and years the way it used to be

but from that day we realised in sadness and disgrace
while arguments will rage and rage they never can replace
nor bring back those who sat and cheered all as that game began
as scarves were waved and sunlight shone on trophy and on fan

no mighty modern structures no chrome nor steel designs
can ‘ere erase or truly face those tragic frightful times
we learned a million lessons we looked to shoulder blame
to everyone whose life was changed we hang our heads in shame

those truly awful moments they changed our football homes
but what a price for luxury if only we had known
if only this if only that for words will always fail
and can’t bring back the ones we lost and is to no avail

“the whole stand is on fire” he cried upon my radio
and how it started to this day we still may never know
but still we can’t forget those scenes the fear the heat the pain
and pray that such a day as this will never dawn again

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Teresa May, she knew
that Brexit would prove problematic
in the EU

but Brexit
is absolutely NOT happening

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Game of Beauty

Game of Duty:
take your pick, either or both, provided great drama
bettered again just days later
by ‘Pool beating Barca
only unbelievably
the drama ratcheted up even more, the following night
as Spurs slipped 3 goals behind on aggregate, versus Ajax
and then we witnessed, the mother of all comebacks
and the sight of an Argentinian hard-man crying
for there could be no denying
that Pochettino, has worked miracles
as has Klopp –
so who will be King of the Crop?
who is it, on 1st June
will make us swoon
and in the media zones
ascend to the Line of Thrones?!?

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Anfield riot for Barcelona slayers

Champions League semi final

Liverpool 4-0 Barcelona

Plenty folk said it can’t be done
But this team are never resigned
Maybe so, but they’d be the ones
Who refused to admit they’re fried

No Salah, no Bobby, no worry
Who thought Origi’d be such trouble?
Then Klopp released his Gini of the lamp
Liverpool reduce Barca to rubble

Robbo ruffles the golden ones hair
Now matters get real Messi
Pure pedal to the heavy metal
The Barca slayers go on a spree

All the stars of the Blaugrana
Just couldn’t get near that ball
‘Never give up!’ hailed Salah
This is the greatest comeback of all

07 05 19


© emdad rahman

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Liverpool Key Men

ON the ROAD to


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