State of Play

1 Leave a comment on verse 1 0 The game belongs behind rows
of neat allotments & red brick terraces & pigeon duckets
watched by gadgies in flat caps
called norman & ted & frank
coughing coal dust into white hankies
in a stand that looks like an old cow hemmel
with the ripe stench of boiling onions & pies
& chip fat cutting the cold air
while a red glow from the steel works
illuminates the grey afternoon skies
as rain falls heavy as black bullets
from the gathering gloom
stotting off corrugated tin sheets
rather than in soulless concrete coliseums
where the flat warm beer in plastic cups
costs an hours’ wages
& they’ve never heard of ham & pease pudding stotties.


Source: https://footballpoets.org/poems/state-of-play/