1977, Andy Lynch Won The Cup.

We didn’t know when,

Alfie Conn-he used to be one of them,

but he’s alright now – swung in the corner,

as Roddy McDonald,

towered, and powered,

a header goal wards,

that we were watching:

the end of an era.

Silver laden years

where the club was dragged from,

black and white,

into blinding technocolour.

Shuggie poked, after the goalies fumble

the ball was palmed,

like ushering a toddler away from a fire.

A clear penalty

no need for weeks -or years- of disputes,

Mr Valentine was sure.

But we still didn’t know

that this was the last of

10 league titles,

8 scottish cups,

6 league cups,

and the small matter of a European cup.

We were asking:

Why was Andy Lynch,not King Kenny

placing the ball?

It didn’t matter.

A left footed arrow

sent to the right,

keeper was beaten,

from moment,

Kipper took the ball from his grasp.

Into the net,

which rejected its catch,

using the howls of despair,

from the terracing beyond,

trying to blow away the reality,

and the ball to safety.

We didn’t know at the time,

as Andy punched a hole in the sky,

scaring Joe Craig, amusing Kenny,

a joyous dance: of autumn leaves falling from trees,

turning the red commemorative graffiti

on the hoops: beautiful forever,

that Jock’s trophy years were up.

Our only thoughts were with Andy Lynch,

winning our 25th Scottish Cup.

Written to commemorate the release of Andy Lynch’s autobiography “Hoops, Stars and Stripes”. First published on Celtic Quick News.  

Gladbach All Over

The priest called us to order

as you revved your engine

a Teutonic hum

set to a motorik beat

 

press, press, press, press

move, move, move, move

pass, pass, pass, pass

that usually fashioned a chance

 

how to get 3 points away

in the champions league

then celebrate with your uproarious lot

as sometimes you just need to applaud

 

while we watch you indulge

in a memorial mosh

on our pitch

and on our dreams.

Gladbach came to Celtic Park and took 3 points. I thought of Kraftwork. Published on Celtic Quick News.

The Scarf

As i grab my scarf, from the place it’s lovingly kept,

Decide what knot will hang round my neck,

Walk out the door to be become a suspect

 

That i will offend someone, somewhere

Cause i’ve decided what scarf to wear,

meeting my friends and paying bus fare,

 

As we travel we can’t have a beer

Cause wearing a scarf is something to fear

It will cause me to sing what you don’t want to hear,

 

At a stadium, entered with an overpriced ticket

Canny buy a pint and standing is prohibit

Details stored as a potential trial exhibit

 

As i’m filmed eating my pie,

Discussing defeats, or players gone by

Celebrating a goal or rueing chances denied

 

I may offend in the same clothes i wore

That morning, when i went through the door

To the cashline and trainers on the bookies floor

 

But without the scarf i’m not a danger

To societies fabric or a potential major

Criminal, as i’m showing no signs of bad behaviour

 

As my scarf is lying where it’s lovingly kept

A criminal noose not round my neck

Only football fans are suspects.

Written about how football fans are criminalised under the Offensive Behaviour Act. First published on Celtic Quick News

Take You Down To Our Paradise, City

All we wanted was a goal,

maybe a crunching tackle, like days of old.

You know the type?

A leveller

the introduction that you’re going to get a game.

 

But we got so much more.

 

We took the storm from the sky,

brought it to the park,

the city defence found,

the swirling rain easier to mark

 

With no little skill,

coupled with the passion of fighting lovers

we made a mockery of money

and the belittling attitudes of others.

.

 

We started to dream that we would have a Scott McDonald,

a Massimo Donati or a Chris Sutton

even a Darius Dziekanowski,

winning this time,to send us home buzzing.

 

But we got enough to make the result an afterthought.

 

As the stentorian support roared

louder as it grew darker

a priceless 12th man ( that Arab dollars can’t buy)

the spirit of fireworks exploding in a box

delivered a bloody nose.

 

The knockout blows,

as celebrated by a bronze Caeser

holding the big cup skywards,

are in the past but are remembered on nights like these.

 

When the players grow into the hoops

go eye to eye

and are defiant,

standing on the shoulders of historical giants.

Written to ‘celebrate’ on of the best Champions League nights Celtic Park has ever bore witness and breathed life to. First published on Celtic Quick News. 

Wales & Gareth Bale

It’s always Wales and Gareth Bale

From the first time I stepped into tartan army boots –

Timberlands, off course –

To suffer defeat

During a snowstorm

With breaks for sleet

It was so cold –

But not cold enough –

To change my mind

That following Scotland

Would be worthwhile a pastime.

Now it’s Wales and Gareth Bale again

Illuminating Euro twenty sixteen

Where we lost the invite

Despite having it in our hands

It’s not your faith of our fathers

Blond hair, beards or the dancing

It’s not non scoring strikers

Scoring goals that will have a million youtube hits

Shown forever more

Like Van Bastens in eighty eight

Could Scotland not have this fate?

It’s that you are daring to dream

Bridesmaids being the bride

While we seem to fail

Slipping into the comfortable slipper

Of a forgotten football nation –

We gave the world the game you know? –

Left with nostalgia

And nothing else,

A Collins gallus wink,

Narey toe-poke,

McStay in ninety two,

A Uruguayan heartbreak,

A night in Genoa

The aching for glorious failure, again

It’s always Wales and Gareth Bale

I wish that night had been colder.   

The Colony Of PZYK

 

Head in a fuzz

eyes speckled

burned by light

ears distorted

to normal sounds

the wristband of PZYK

you get on entry

takes you to your level

whatever level

that is

one of glittered eyes in tie dyed

stars, spheres or paisley patterned shapes  

a weekender looking for Dionysian kicks

all climbing the imaginary ladder

to the oscillations

in their head

vibrating to the tremolo

in their soul

capturing the euphoria

of the heady analogue pulse

beating their heart like no other

reverb repetition

taking them on a train journey

past the industrial spaces of life

to another space

the canvas of the mind matter

where the simple becomes perfect

the blank becomes coloured

where any feeling that lodges

then remains

then is remembered

belongs to

The colony of PZYK

The Supporters Clubs

 

It doesn’t matter how supporters clubs are born.

Whether in the back rooms of bars or when it outgrows cars.

The spirit is in the foundation.

The spirit is in togetherness.

That togetherness creates a whole to what you feel as one.

Community is togetherness.

It’s the togetherness celebrating league wins and Hampdens in the sun.

It’s the togetherness in sharing the sorrow of defeats.

It’s the togetherness that makes these seem not too bad.

It’s the togetherness that sees the creation of a second family.

One that shares birthdays, weddings, births, deaths, laughter and tears.

It’s the togetherness in going to the game supporting the cause.

Since the brake clubs through to today we stand behind our banners of togetherness.

Celtic gave us inspiration and we return with the spirit of our fathers and communities.

That togetherness is there and always will be there.

It’s this togetherness that means we are more than a club.

It doesn’t matter how a supporters club is born.

Once born it never walks alone.