Do Three Stands Sing a Song?

Our football stadiums have been declared out of bounds. Does life breathe on inside them without supporters? Lost Weekends’ first poem asks the questions.

By Stuart Kenny

Words of comfort from us to you during football’s coronavirus absence. A reminder that some day the game will be back with all its nonsense and beauty intact. Here to cheer you up or help you wallow in melancholy until kick-off comes again. We can get through this.

What does a football stadium do when it’s not being used?

Does it just sit all sad, all empty and confused?

Does it dream of roars in days gone

That made its foundations move,

Or of the players who left cheering or cheated or bruised?

 

Does it sheen empty seats so they’re clean when they’re needed?

Does it cut its own grass and if it needs to re-seed it?

Does it play back bangers that made its cauldron boil,

Or famous hits that happened on faraway soil?

 

Does it project 40-yard piledrivers it’s yet to see happen?

Cheer when they go in; start singing and clapping?

Or is it missing the laughing, the love and the passion?

Does it feel sort of useless, like the running track at Hampden?

 

Does the stadium feel cold, without heat on its seats?

Does the ground feel old with the fixture list ceased?

Do the stands feel lonely? Does the stadium greet?

So close yet so far from the fans on the street

who have its image embroidered on arms and on bed sheets.

 

How does a football stadium feel when there’s no one inside?

Is the turf still hallowed? Are the goals just as wide?

 

Does its world still hang on an invisible force?

Do three stands sing a song, and shout abuse at the fourth?

Does it play Subbuteo with superstars who left it all on the field?

Does the sign tap itself in the tunnel at Anfield?

 

Do birds still sit in rafters,

Write the player ratings and watch?

Are you allowed to use your hands if you’re out of the box?

Can stands still send shockwaves; full of people or not?

 

And does the fairydust still glitter around the penalty spot?

Words of comfort from us to you during football’s coronavirus absence. A reminder that some day the game will be back with all its nonsense and beauty intact. Here to cheer you up or help you wallow in melancholy until kick-off comes again. We can get through this.

Issue 18
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