When We Were Kings!

1 Leave a comment on verse 1 0 Our boots were paid by installments
A ‘tally man’ picked up every week
A ‘provi cheque’ provided adornments
So we looked well turned out and neat.

2 Leave a comment on verse 2 0 I like to say that was the way
When we were growing up
But that’s not so, so I’ll have you know
A jumble sale decked out our club.

3 Leave a comment on verse 3 0 Our shirts? Old property of some toffs offspring
Ma bought down the ‘good as new’
The nuns provided us with football stockings
And baggy shorts in a morbid dark blue.

4 Leave a comment on verse 4 0 Humble beginnings? Yeah I suppose so
Me mates and me were wafer thin
When match day came, we always thought though
In spite of it all, we could win!



A pure nostalgia trip.

As this poem has a distinct London Irish flavour to it. It might need a little bit of explaining. So here we go…..

A tallyman was a bloke who came knocking on your door trying to sell you clothes or goods that he knew, you couldn’t afford to buy down the shops, cos you had no money. But he would sell them to you anyway… at greatly inflated interest rates that you paid back on a weekly basis.

A provident cheque came much later, just like the tally man but legal!

A good as new was like the charity shops of today, where our ma’s bought our clothes, if they wouldn’t or couldn’t get the two options above. In the part of South West London we came from, rich pickings were to be had at these places as up the road was where all the well off families resided, so we got their cast off’s!

Right! Get yer Kleenex out and enjoy the poem!

In spite of it all, never the less great times.



Source: https://footballpoets.org/poems/when-we-were-kings/