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The war was now over, the men had come home
From Tunis and Paris and Munich and Rome,
And England was bankrupt and foodstuffs were short,
But people kept soldiering on, of a sort.
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One thing that many were short of was shoes,
And shoe-shops experienced lengthening queues.
And it was no secret that fortunes were made
By illicit shoe-sellers in black market trade.
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Despite all the hue about rationing scandals,
You still went to them for a pair of nice sandals.
And slippers or booties, stilettos or brogues
Could all be obtained from these loveable rogues.
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When the local team played, they would hover around
Behind either goal at the back of the ground.
And they didn’t care if they’d win, draw or lose,
As they opened their macs to display rows of shoes.
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Now on this cold day back in old ’46,
These illicit shoe-sellers were up to their tricks.
‘Twas during a Cup match ‘twixt Morecambe and Barrow,
And the sizeable crowd was all chilled to the marrow.
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The game wasn’t special; it ended a draw,
And so they prepared to play half an hour more.
I wouldn’t assert that this Cup-tie was boring,
But half of the crowd in the stand started snoring.
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The extra time added was now almost up,
And both teams were battling to stay in the Cup,
But chances were few as defences excelled,
When suddenly the big Morecambe forward was felled.
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And so ‘twas a free just outside of the box.
The big Morecambe forward then pulled up his socks.
And a silence descended on the crowd as a whole
[Except the shoe-sellers behind either goal]
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I’d like to pretend that his thundering shot
Was even on target, but sadly ‘twas not.
And a fan, to much laughter, stood up in the crowd,
“It’s heading for a shoe-tout,” he shouted out loud.