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Munitionette on the football field - by Kirsten Luckins

This is one of a series of 'Munitionette' poems written by Kirsten Luckins for the 'Heroism & Heartbreak' Project:

Grace is a thing of muscle,

gluteus, soleus, glorious

collusion of sinew – grace

is a ball passed girl to girl,

pool to pool down a cascade,

private joke, secret shared.

Have you ever played? She has

begun to live for this, a path

to the goal like a break in clouds,

defenders as much use as mist,

every beat of her heart a direct hit,

feet alert as searchlights,

when she strikes, it’s the kiss

of a drillbit on an eight inch casing,

crowd screaming louder than lathes –

but its not for this that she plays

Hoods Haggies or the slips from Vickers,

or takes the fight to Wallsend Slipway;

it’s not for dutiful funds raised,

minesweepers’ orphans mean nothing

when the leather thuds – afterwards

they can count the shillings out

for the Sailors’ Flower Day or

Welcome Home for the lucky men

for whom she will retire. But now

                                                               Grace is a thing of muscle,       

gluteus, soleus, glorious

explosion, Grace is a thing of fire.

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