A devoted football fan, Tony Bradman presents here a collection of new and classic football poems. Children who love ‘the beautiful game’ will appreciate the range of emotions, the agony, the ecstasy, and the excitement described by the many poets included in this well-chosen and humorously illustrated anthology.
A youngster’s pre-match nerves are felt keenly in John Foster’s ‘The Night Before the Big Match’. Allan Ahlberg captures, in Joyce Grenfell style, the essence of a struggling junior team’s manager in ‘Team Talk’, whilst that special moment of wearing a brand new strip is nicely handled in ‘New Kit’ by Celia Warren.
There are over 60 contributions from poets such as Roger McGough, Jill Townsend, John Agard and Nick Toczek. Poems from the past, such as ‘Cup Final Day, 1961’ by Brian Moses, may not be as readily accessible as the more modern poems including Jonathan Kebbe’s ‘The Nutmeg Rap’, but there is plenty of variety to suit all tastes. There are football haiku poems and Paul Cookson’s football version of the Lord’s Prayer (‘Our team, which are eleven, Hallowed be our team…’). For fans of the bard there is ‘Shakespeare’s Boots’ by Brian Morse (‘Shall I compare thee to a wintry afternoon, Thou art more full of stinks and rank with mud.’).
You’ll be over the moon with this anthology, not sick as a parrot.