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the games boys play – poem

November 13, 2013

First pass

When I could no longer run
I dreamt of rugby
dawn teasing
with faded sweetness of violence.

Second pass

time steals our legs
but barters unfairly
with dawn’s fading memories
of sweet violence

Third pass

time steals our legs
but barters unfairly
leaving dawn’s fading memories
of sweet violence


From → poetry

  1. I too loved “time steals our legs” and the sweet violence is so expressive–lovely write!

    • Thanks – one of the sad moments an athlete must face is when he becomes too slow to play at a high level. Some can play on the B-team for fun, I never could.

  2. I love this! My eyes “took” to the unique patterning. I could feel an undulation happening, not unlike a pantoum. And I could sense a reminiscence somewhat wistful…

    • certainly wistful, when I could no longer run, I used to dream of running… thanks for reading

  3. The repetition of sweet violence is powerful.

  4. I think this is profound. I have friends who are athletes, and friends who were athletes when they were younger. They would read with dread or read with understanding, depending on what stage they were in now.

    • Thanks for reading Lydia – I am pleased you liked my poem. I think back to my rugby days with mixed feelings – I could do without all the concussions, but it helped make me who I am. The team became my tribe, and we all need tribes.

      I wrote a few rugby stories in my other blog under YARS ( Yet Another Rugby Story ) here is one…

      glad you stopped by – bw

  5. sweet violence…but some of us love the game and are never quite satisfied to look back

    • I am not sure how to interpret your comment, but as a center who scored his share of trys – few things match the beauty of the well timed collision where one drives their opponent into the ground…

  6. Love your opening and “time steals our legs” is brilliant, metaphoric too.

    • thanks – for sportsmen it is the sad truth – I think knowing that someone read your poetry is a very satisfying feeling.

  7. The fourth quarter of game is where I am, and have watched the fading od everything. However,dawn’s fading memories left ME…I went nowhere. Yet!

    Never played or spectated rugny–er, rugby–grin! I just fiddled my life away. True in more than one way.

  8. Me thinks I shouldn’t hit the ‘post comment’ button so fast, that’s what me thinks – as it should be rugby and not rugny 😦

  9. Brought a chuckle – me thinks this ex-rugny player is wiser than he lets out to be. Yes, that’s what me thinks 🙂

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