Poem – I Never Saw You Play

I never saw you play
I was in shorts at the same time as you
But mine were the infant playground
I never saw you play

Just that tiny bit too young
For you to be my hero
I grew up blue and proud of it
Labone, West, Harvey, Kendall, Royle

Alan Ball’s white football boots
From those days forward
I have also looked back
It’s good to know your history

The legacy of heroes
William Ralph Dean, The Cannonball Kid
And you, The Golden Vision
I never saw you play

But have read about your touch
Infinitely sure, sublime and ethereal
The quiet drift to left and right
The shimmy of the hips

Always more ghost than greyhound
History paints you as an artist
Oozing charisma and capturing the imagination
Of the Goodison faithful

I asked my dad about you
He answered with words like a “belter” and a “cracker”
“A right good ‘un” and that’s good enough for me
I wish I’d seen you play

The reality of your magic
The eighty seven goals
I may not have seen you play
But do indeed know your name
Alex Young – The Golden Vision

PAUL COOKSON