Who grieves for Jimmy Greaves?

Me, in the memory of foot stamping cold

on the terraces in flares, snotty nosed

in the early seventies

walking from Walthamstow,

a dedicated crowd trudging to the ground. 


Me, for my own self struggling with a career,

seeing cigarette smoke rising to a grey sky,

the threat and promise of goals

often nothing but a plunge of dead hands into pockets

and unaware tears joining the flow spilling out

of the ground like an open prison

to watch Match of the Day

on black and white telly all over again.; 




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Wed 22nd Sep 2021 22:27

Fascinating stuff Graham and more power to your elbow. I remember Steve Perryman's debut , caused a stir. At one game the crowd surged forward and we were pushed about ten yards, scary. I used to watch West Ham too in that single deck arena. Hell, i'm becoming a fan....


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Graham Sherwood

Wed 22nd Sep 2021 13:28

Ray, when I was ten years old (when a lot of boys begin to pick a favourite team) THFC were the top bananas! Following them for almost 60 years has been a rugged journey to say the least!

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Tue 21st Sep 2021 20:44

Hi Graham. I felt a connection with the heroes of the day and the team at the time, and I believed suffered in the pilgrimage. That's just my version, and the likes of Jimmy were of their time and beyond it. Shame he was left out of the 1966 winning game! I remember Gilzean likewise with his headers. Great personality. And thanks for saying that , I try to rely on inspiration, not easy at the moment.

Greg, as a master recorder of moments yourself you have sussed out the truth. A very long trudge - my mate being the prime mover, as we also worked as a duo and just starting in the business. We never thought of it as a hardship, just got on with it. Mucho gracias for the compliment.

John, an erratic game just kept us on our toes as it were! They were doing pretty well at the time.

Thanks Stephen, glad it worked for you. Yes, a long way indeed, and the pubs always brim full too.

Thanks for the likes, Stephen, Holden and Donna.

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Stephen Gospage

Mon 20th Sep 2021 21:24

A lovely description, Ray. And Walthamstow's a good walk.

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John Coopey

Mon 20th Sep 2021 19:59

I saw him as a kid a number of times, Ray. He was often useless for 89 minutes and then …….

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Greg Freeman

Sun 19th Sep 2021 23:32

'Foot stamping cold' and 'cigarette smoke rising to a grey sky' ... you were there, Ray, you didn't make this up! For one day Chelsea and Spurs fans were united, to mourn a marvellous footballer. 'A plunge of dead hands into pockets' ... 'an open prison' ... this is really good writing about football crowds.

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Graham Sherwood

Sun 19th Sep 2021 22:02

Although long expected, this loss really upset my day. It's a shame that Spurs couldn't have 'done it for Jimmy' today, leaving Chelsea to do it for them!

I don't feel ready to write anything about him yet. I once met him after his stage chat show. A true 'legend' a term so badly overused these days.

That you for this Ray. I always enjoy your work.


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