Almanac Poetry: ‘Another A to Z of Footballers Past’

Over a month ago, I posted my poem “A to Z of Footballers Past” on The Footy Almanac website. It received a pleasing response. I had so many ideas for another such piece that I had to write it.



Another A to Z of Footballers Past
(again, a nod to Ogden Nash)



A is for Ayres,
Conan, Hawk defender.
He would flash his big chompers,
then most likely up-end ya.


B is for Barassi,
“Mr Football” to many.
A player and coach
with premiership antennae.


C is for Carey,
champion Roo.
In Pagan’s paddock,
he flourished and flew.


D is for Daicos,
Macedonian Marvel.
Sharpshooter supreme,
talent colossal.


E is for Ebert,
South Aussie Russell.
Four “Marjorie” Medals.
Great skill and muscle.


F is for Fletcher,
Dustin the Don.
Inspector Gadget
who could kick a long bomb.


G is for Goodes,
Adam, graceful Swan.
Sublime utility,
indigenous icon.


H is for Hudson,
Hawk Peter the Great.
But beating Pratt’s record
was not his fate.


I is for Icke,
Roo/Demon Stephen.
He’ll do nicely here.
(The I’s are quite even.)


J is for Jezza,
with his wizardly tricks.
He looked like Aldo
from Number 96.


K is for Keenan.
(List “Crackers” or not?)
His favourite story:
“When I belted Don Scott”.


L is for Lahiff.
Let’s give it to Tommy,
who wore many guernseys,
was much loved on the tranny.


M is for Michael.
As a ruckman, no peer.
Would’ve loved it, oh Stephen,
if you’d come over here.


N is for Nicholls,
Carlton’s “Big Nick”.
With a backhanded whack,
he could make your ear thick.


O is for Ottens.
I’ve a soft spot for him.
This tall man helped
three Cats premiership wins.


P is for Pert,
the great Lion Gary.
Opponents did find
his poise almost scary.


Q is for Quade,
the durable Ricky.
He often excelled
in conditions sticky.


R is Raines.
Geoff played for four teams.
With the Tigers best known,
a centreline dream.


S is for Skilton,
triple Brownlow Bob.
A bright shining light
for the South Melbourne mob.


T is for Thurgood,
early Dons superstar.
“Albert the Great”
could boot it so far.


U is for Ugle.
Troy the West Coaster.
(Suggested by Smokie.)


V is for Vander Haar,
high flying Paul.
A Dons highlight reel,
he often stood tall.


W is for Williams,
dual Brownlow Diesel.
A footballing artist,
who needed no easel.


X – there’s no X’s –
but take it from me,
“X (Xavier Tanner) marks the spot.”
So said D. Cometti. (Thanks Daniel Flesch.)


Y is for Yeates,
Geelong’s Mark is he.
Well-known for collecting
big Derm at the “G”.


Z is for Zempilas.
Didn’t know Basil’s worth
till I found out today
that he played for West Perth.





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Kevin Densley is a graduate of both Deakin University and The University of Melbourne. He has taught writing and literature in numerous Victorian universities and TAFES. He is a poet and writer-in-general. His fifth book-length poetry collection, Please Feed the Macaws ... I'm Feeling Too Indolent, will be published in late 2023 by Ginninderra Press. He is also the co-author of ten play collections for young people, as well as a multi Green Room Award nominated play, Last Chance Gas, which was published by Currency Press. Other writing includes screenplays for educational films.


  1. Thea Allan says

    Love tour poems

  2. Kevin Densley says

    Cheers! Thanks, Thea.

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