1 Leave a comment on verse 1 0 ALL:
Please note we have had to introduce a spam blocking mechanism to the poem submission process, I hope you all appreciate that this has only been done out of necessity.

2 Leave a comment on verse 2 0 Our thanks again to the site’s original builder, Dave Cockroft, who has always willingly helped out when necessary.

3 Leave a comment on verse 3 0 ~ # ~

4 Leave a comment on verse 4 0 CTE

5 Leave a comment on verse 5 0 I’m the meat in the sandwich –
sofa buddies either side of me
“head-the-ball” to my left (he never did)
and “Scrapper” to the right –
a little mini-me
cultured, clued-in and committed
not afraid to put his head in where it hurts
yet he’s usually ahead of the game
and comments wisely
as we dissect the Euro prepping friendlies

6 Leave a comment on verse 6 0 I’m proud of both the aforementioned
different in their own ways
yet genetically tied
to their ‘doddery da’

7 Leave a comment on verse 7 0 And then the discussion
turned to concussion

8 Leave a comment on verse 8 0 I too
met every lofted ball
mid-temple for deftness
mid-forehead for power or distance
over and over and over
loving it
the challenge, the crunch, the crucial intervention

9 Leave a comment on verse 9 0 now I’m like me ma
arthritic bones and swollen joints
trending to me da
rusty, musty and muddled
and I wonder, is my journey
to full sofa attachment
going to be hastened
not by the nutmegs, the shimmies or disco nights
but by the “nut clubbing”
of aerial battles?

10 Leave a comment on verse 10 0 The heirs, see no grace
in their frumpy, grumpy paterfamiliass (sic)
but is one of them on the same pre-determined track?

11 Leave a comment on verse 11 0 Despite the now founded fears
I just know
if I could do it all over again
the heart, the mind, the soul
would still have me out there
defending my goal



CTE : chronic traumatic encephalopathy is a brain condition associated with repeated traumatic brain injuries (concussions) like those received by professional athletes and sports participants.

I’ve been wanting to write for a long time about the growing movement in the USA to ban heading in under-age soccer (I think it already is for Girls soccer?). Yet I couldn’t find the right trigger.

Until tonight.
I watched an absolutely fascinating (& harrowing) RTE documentary on concussion and protocols in Ireland, mainly in Rugby, which also alluded to the recent lawsuits in Gridiron and to many incidents in Rugby.

‘head-the-ball’ : an Irishism meaning ‘oddball’

An associated trigger: mother-in-law Theresa staying with us all this week, in early onset dementia.

The documentary also featured young Ben Robinson, 14 years old, who lost his life while playing Rugby, in a concussed state, due to SIS : Second Impact Syndrome.

Lessons to be learned for us all.

#1 & #3 feature in the poem.
#2 was out on a date. His first date saw him at the recent movie called Concussion, starring Will Smith, which by all accounts was fascinating.

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