Footy Quatrains Part 2

Advice to a Young Footballer

“Don’t worry what the papers say,
don’t fear the words of men,
in Melbourne-town the footy boot
is mightier than the pen.”



Jesaulenko You Beauty!

If you blinked you would have missed it––
like the strike of a death adder––
he was soaring into outer space,
Jenkins was his stepladder.



Pre-match Address

The more he spoke, the more it seemed,
his lines were all rehearsed,
and English was his second language––
Yeti was his first.



The Vilified Player

If there’s a cure for racism,
he cannot ascertain it,
but if he cannot change the world,
he’ll have to entertain it.



The Indigenous Game

A game for all conditions,
be it quagmire, grass or sand,
from orchards of the Apple Isle
to cliffs of Arnhem Land.



Opening Bounce

A sound reverberating like
the Colosseum’s roar
when the hapless Christian chanced upon
the hungry lion’s jaw.



The Ageing Full-Forward

Is this the man that ruled the square
and made opponents tremble?
For now he is a laughing stock
a leper he resembles.



The Non-Drinker

His teammates were completely stunned,
they viewed with much suspicion
those pansies who did not partake
of anglicised traditions.



 The Country Footballer

“I play the game because I love it––
not for hollow cheers,
but those who play for man’s acclaim
are prisoners to their fears.”



The Hybrid Game

A delicious combination
of all the sporting codes,
where rugby, soccer, basketball
orgasmically explode




And on the shores of Gallipoli
Aussie Rules was played
by brave and fearless soldier-boys
before they joined the fray.



A Game of Our Own

While conquered nations play the games
their captors make them play,
“Let us play our own game!”
the defiant Aussies say.


Note, some of these will be appearing in a forthcoming volume from Ginninderra Press

About Damian Balassone

Damian Balassone is a failed half-forward flanker who writes poetry. He is the author of 'Strange Game in a Strange Land'.


  1. Phil Dimitriadis says

    Wonderful stuff, Damo, really enjoying the way you take the big issues and the individual nuances of the game and weave them together in the poetic form.

    The quatrain is so symbolic to footy: Four quarters, goal posts, seams on the ball. All symbols worth reflecting on. Let us know when the volume appears in print. Would love to buy a copy.

  2. Good stuff, Damo. The Vilified Player; The Country Footballer and the Hybrid Game really struck me. People think poetry is about the rhyme; but I always listen for the rhythm in my inner ear. The flow and the nuance and novelty of the sentiment expressed.
    Put me on your mailing list for when the volume is ready.

  3. DBalassone says

    Thanks Phil and Peter. Appreciate the feedback & encouragement. Will let you know when the volume is ready.

  4. haiku bob says

    love ’em Damo!
    (don’t forget four flags in a row phil!)


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