My friends, I left my foot in and I followed through.
I ploughed on when pace left me for dead.
I pulled out of simple 50:50s.
I chose to stand still and became a wall.
I ball-watched, took my eye off it.
I made bad decisions and thought I saw passes
My limbs could not thread in a month.
I got caught in two minds.
I picked up the banjo but could not hit the barn door.
I asked too much of tired legs, shot from distance
And failed to make sure of anything.
I may have led with my elbow.
I certainly stuck out my chin and leant in.
I dreamt, my friends, I dreamt.
Mark Robinson’s new and selected poems How I Learned to Sing was published by Smokestack Books in 2013 and selected by New Writing North for Read Regional 2014. Mark’s poem ‘The Infinite Town’ was commissioned in 2015 as part of the regeneration of Stockton High Street and is carved on a large plinth there; he likes to stand anonymously by it when he goes shopping. Mark is also the founder of Thinking Practice, a leading arts and cultural consultancy.