Epic encounters between Liverpool and Man Utd
were played on concrete, in our street
Adidas kick, the trainers of dreams
but a school plimsole would score the goal
The game was on a knife edge
9-9 the score, game ends with one more
“Pearson” is free with a open net
“Tommy Smith” takes away his feet, “Pearson’s” nose crunches on concrete
High pitched boys scream and shout
it is a penalty without doubt
“Steve Coppell” steps up to take the spot kick
a deadly silence fills the street as plimsole and football meet
the sound of the strike fills the street
it echoes off the narrow terraced houses
adults come out to investigate the source of the sound
radios are turned to the “police messages”
children look around in bewilderment
before the questions of where was it
have been answered
another bomb blast is heard through the street
the ball rolls away
Belfast, 21st January 1975.
The Irish Republican Army set off a series of bombs.
I was 8.
That was the day the illusion, of miners blasting on Cave Hill
My parents had did a good job of protecting me from the reality of what some call “the troubles” in Northern Ireland. I was lead to believe the blasts we grew up with were the result of “Blasting” much akin to what you see in old Western Movies with sticks of Dynamite taped together. To get that to stick until I was 8 was quite a feet, and I thank them for it.
Too all those that believed they lived through the terrorist campaign and were untouched, hopefully this poem will show the disruption that was inescapable, affected you. It just became normal, to you. That does not mean your life was normal.
The names of the players are the names of Liverpool and Manchester United players of that year. For those of you that don’t know, it is very normal for boys to use the name of their favourite player while playing, its just a boy thing. Typically street football (Soccer) is 10 the winner, 5 change round.
Picture Credit : Getty Images