If I'd Picked Up A Snooker Cue


If I’d picked up a snooker cue, when I picked up a pen;

and then gone on to build a break of eight or nine or ten.


If I had only listened more to those who understand;

who told me not to play the game by using just one hand.


If I’d just watched Big Break much more, instead of writing rhyme;

and studied Thorne and Knowles instead of Byron all the time.


If I’d just gone and bought more chalk, and even used a tip,

upon my cue, then thought perhaps to practice just a bit.


If I had researched Virgo’s words instead of Wilfred Owen;

and written many papers on ‘Where’s the cue ball going?’


If I had only listened more to whispering Ted Lowe,

instead of sometimes listening to Pam Ayres in full flow.


If I had studied Parrott’s wit and Alex Higgins flair

instead of Larkin, Betjeman, Wordsworth or John Clare.


If only I’d heard Snooker Loopy played a little more,

Instead of writing verses that sometimes never rhyme!


If I had just stayed up all night to watch the grinder ‘Cliff’,

and not penned many rewrites of Kipling’s poem ‘If!’


If I'd just see the final frame in nineteen eighty five,

and had a longer tape cassette which didn't then rewind.


If I'd thought of a funky name like Jimmy 'Whirlwind' White,

or 'Scarface' or 'The Rocket'; one which would excite.


If I had done these things I've said; I'm sure, oh yes, I know it!

I would have been a snooker star, and not an unknown poet!