Posted in Love

Champion

Age 12, thought is warped by the maturity continuum
childhood vanishing, but evident
adulthood in the dressing room – yet to take the stage,
football, still legitimate anointer of kings and kingdom.
Sometimes the coach called us men –
but we knew he was appealing to something not yet present
boys, for a few years to come.
Our team had only one star,
two or three craftsmen,
the rest, tradesman-like,
but a champion team
bound for championship – until the final.

A team from the threadbare suburbs wins by two points
after a touchdown is disallowed
when the line umpire, a parent from the opposition,
signals our player stepped out, when he hadn’t.
Protests, but the referee is firm –
the flag was up,
he looks at the linesman, who nods. Closed. No appeal.

Back on the better suburbed part of town
we drank hurt, bewildered Cokes.
Our coach said he didn’t see
but sometimes people do the wrong thing, for the right reason.

 

Author:

Most of my life has been spent on the bench, occasionally called into the game by extravagance or attenuation. Waiting has turned a loner into a recorder - nondescript and inconsequential, more not noticed than overlooked - the non-vantage point of children not yet considered old enough to understand. Orphaned Islands (Un)poetry is a lifetime of picking anecdotes up and not throwing them away. Stories collected like odds and ends placed in a box in the basement, the garage, the garden shed - uncertain as to what their use might be but knowing that one day there might be one.