It’s a Man’s Game?

1 Leave a comment on verse 1 0 It’s the same story every time they play
I see it in the nervousness on the face
The twitching irritability which builds from two days before
And stretches after defeat to two days beyond.
It’s the ‘get out of my way’ when I walk in front of Match of the Day
It’s the snarl I get when, fed up, I exclaim
“Oh for goodness sake, it’s only a game!”

2 Leave a comment on verse 2 0 We’ve been married for plenty of years,
But a bit of peace and quiet suits;
The house empty, I slow down the pace
Discussing with myself the merits(and demerits)of the good old human race
Turning the pages of those magazines never seen,
Eating those cakes so recently baked
Phoning my mother in peace.

3 Leave a comment on verse 3 0 But then the games over – quarter to five – that much I’ve learned
I check the score
And bate my breath…
But whatever the score, I know what’s in store
Is the after-match analysis, that list of names
That “bastard of a referee”
And that “dirty, northern number three”
So I whip off my pinny, smooth back my hair
And greet her with my usual smile
“It was great, John,” she says, “now give us a kiss.”


I think I’ve got the name right. Anna Merriman. Anna sent us this before a literary festival back in 1996; she was the editor of the Swindon Town F.C. fanzine.

Source: https://footballpoets.org/poems/its-a-mans-game/