Winning Captains

Time to stop dancing: the jig of joy.

Time to take your triumphant teammates –

weary legged, but ecstatic,

up the stadium stairs,

or onto a hastily built podium.  

 

A walk of glory

to look at himself in the curved silver,

shining like a full moon

on a calm sea,

green and white ribbons, neatly tied,

 

fluttering in the sunlight,

glimmering in the floodlight,

as he lifts the cup,

to the sound of celebration,

that has changed over the years.

 

Caps and sticks in the air,

cards in hats,

joyus cheers,

confetti cannons,

fireworks that shake the stadiums foundations.

The emotion has never changed,

no matter if Glasgow or Lisbon,

the first, second or last,

history inscribed into silver,

the chapter closes, with you, always

a winning captain.    

Written after Celtic won their 100th trophy and inspired by the Walk With Shay print depicting captains of the club. First published on Celtic Quick News

 

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Kenny In The Green

You grew up in Ibrox’s shadow

with their heroes on your wall

that all changed

in the glorious May

when Sean Fallon called.

 

You were now Kenny of Celtic

the best there’s ever been

the jungle roared loudest

when you wore the green.

 

Your arrival was announced

in a place you knew so well

memories of support

faded

with a gallus

P.A.U.S.E

to tie your lace

then choose your place

to stroke the penalty home.

 

From boghead to brockville

you turned patchy parks to gold

breezing by defenders

turning

twisting

tight

close control unrivalled

the celts roared

at the sight

of you

rounding numerous goalies

dancing with ease

a red cheeked wonder

who we didn’t want to leave.

 

We never tired of you

taking the acclaim

with a smile

as wide as the clyde

all boyish looks,

foppish hair

Arms up

palms wide

reaching for the stars

when the stars

should have been reaching for you.

 

You were as close to perfect

as we have ever seen

Kenneth Mathieson Dalglish

or King Kenny in the Green.

Published in the book Kenny Of The Celtic 

Scotsman Fanzone: 27th December 2016

It’s the season for love and understanding, unless you’re attending a game where Wullie Collum officiates like a chef who has drunk the cooking sherry. I’ve said numerous times; how he is still a top flight referee should be subject to judicial review.

 

Luckily for us, his decision to send off Calum McGregor saw us turn in our best performance for a number of games with ten men looking more comfortable than eleven. Stuart Armstrong continues to be reborn and his strike was as a christmas cracker.    

 

A Glasgow Derby will be played in an already alcohol soaked time. I won’t be there as there is no way that anyone can justify me paying £49 for a game of football in Scotland. While the press will focus on anti-social behaviour it should be calling out the clubs for this robbery.    

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.