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And so the season of sport is upon us:

Cricket, and the sound of willow hitting someone’s balls,
A bouncer to take off his head,
Arguments with the umpire resulting in knives drawn
And a riot in the beer-bellied crowd.

Tennis – the reigning champion is a nonentity,
Robot-trained and fed on a diet of numbers,
15-love, 30-love, 40-love, game!
With baseline serves fired from precision arms
And a slack-jawed face blanked by too many years of counting money,
Ah, the passion!
The crowd turns
To watch a sparrow landing,
Or a cloud spill some rain.

Golf: a behemoth strode the course,
But behemoths fall,
And, hypnotised by the telly, we have to watch the dragging bores
Claw their way round,
Only the brightness of their jerseys
Preventing us from dropping off the precipice of our excitement …

Football: the national game,
Ruled by turkeys, played by drones,
Watched by cardboard boxes –
Force-fed on money, its’ gut exploded,
Sex-starved shenanigans by the ruling elite
Fill empty pages
(Ah! But wait –
Women’s football shows flair and imagination,
Not yet ruled by the corrupt or watched by Tracy’s boyfriend,
It leaps off the screen
With a scream that yells, ‘You better bloody well watch me!’)

Rugby: the buggers run in the rain,
In Wigan,
In mud –
If you ask me it’s a bit of a dud.

Baseball: 3 a.m, the world asleep,
Commentators chew on names,
Inject excitement into fat men with fat bums,
Home runs,
Girlie Rounders,
No one seems to care that it’s DUMB.

Basketball: tall men, long arms,
Jumping high,
No charm.

Ice-hockey: frenetic pace,
Pucks hurtle invisibly round an icy arena,
Padded shoulders thump each other –
‘If only the sticks were guns!’ you can hear them think,
‘We could finish those losers off completely!’

Boxing: two shits you wouldn’t want to meet in a bar
Obey rules –
That’s the achievement.

American football: indistinguishable from their military tactics,
Philistines advance in massed ranks,
Brute force against brute force,
Size is everything –
It’s a battlefield out there,
But distant spectators just don’t care.

Wrestling: two Queens ham it up for the cameras,
Massaging each other’s shoulders afterwards.

Athletics: lean women who can’t menstruate
Jostle with sprinters in lycra-clad pornography
As high-jumpers whose legs finish a mile away
Crowd out rowers with blank, square-jawed faces,
Skiers who can’t forgive Eddie,
Swimmers with elongated bodies
And squat dwarves pumping weights.

It’s a melange of images,
Faintly disturbing –

I switch off the T.V.

Sports season, and everything else is sidelined off the telly. So let’s take the mickey out of sport …

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