A lesson, for life.

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A lesson, for life. 

Two small trees, at both ends 

Of our tidy sun-blessed lawn,

Defined our very own Elland Road,

The goal mouths, ragged and worn. 

One-a-side was a murderous match, 

Helter skelter, to and fro, 

To passers-by it must've looked mad, 

But I was only seven years old 

And it was me versus my dad! 


At nineteen all, the scores were level. 

Next goal was the winner, we both knew. 

I was confident, full of swagger, 

 I'd faced this jeopardy many times before. 

I'd beat my dad, I'd surely score! 

Winning bliss, I'd so got this! 

I ran the ball towards the trees, 

Took aim- but then- he'd tackled me! 


I ran back swiftly, to no avail. 

My dad had scored, he didn't fail. 

Twenty Nineteen! The game was done.

My dad had disappeared inside.

I stood at the door, I wailed and cried!

I was the victim of a heinous crime!

"Come out and play, dad, extra time!"

"No, sorry, son. The game is over.

Just this once, I'm afraid you've lost."


All my pleading was in vain,

A lesson in life's growing pains.

Twenty nineteen was a painful score

But, looking back, I think it hurt him more.


I took to shouting "I want a replay!"

"John, I've said, that's enough for today."

I just had to take it on the chin.

Life is a game, like football.,

Where you cannot always win. 

◄ Can I be Frank?

Different Times ►


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John Botterill

Tue 7th Dec 2021 16:11

Thanks Stephen. That's exactly right. I needed taking down a peg or three! ?John Botterill

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Stephen Gospage

Mon 6th Dec 2021 21:51

Beautifully narrated, John. I have a feeling that my Dad also reminded me he could win if I got a bit too cocky!

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John Botterill

Mon 6th Dec 2021 09:46

Tough love. I like it! ?
Thanks for your comments, John.
John Botterill

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John Coopey

Mon 6th Dec 2021 09:20

I always told my kids when they were little that I would never let them beat me at anything. So when they did (and it happens regularly now) they would know they had won fair and square.

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