football kwansaba #2 - Van G. Garrett / Fui Koshi

cymbal-crashed torsos and heads make music
as a chorus strikes quickly in unison
in blurred jerseys where logos wildly pounce
when bodies pivot leap stretch fall run
and rapidly collide in high-lifting surges
that crest and hit like fierce waves
felt from the field to the stand

"football kwansaba #2" is part three of our four-part series of poems on soccer. Previous installments can be viewed from our Archive page.


Darko Antwi said...


At first I thought that football commentary was a job for sports writers - and should therefore be reserved for them. Now, I have come so far to believe that reporting a football match can be occupational to a poet, just as it is to a sports journalist.

Honestly, this series have proved to my understanding that poets can explore, and even exploit all sorts of subjects to a satisfactory effect.

Talking about effects, Van G. has done it so well with few lines. He has bottled all the pleasure of a 90-minute game into an approximate 9 seconds reading material.

This time, L.S is right with the mention of: 'no time wasted'. This is true of every enjoyable game: time becomes shortlived, as it seems to elasp so quick. The condensed nature of "Football Kwansaba #2" is symbolic of how brief or elusive the play-time can be.

Welldone, Van.

LS said...


One learns everyday. I didn't know the kwansaba in the title is itself a poetic form:

The kwansaba, a 49-word poetic form invented during the 1995 EBR Writers Club workshop season (in East St. Louis), consists of seven lines of seven words each; each word must contain no more than seven letters. Exceptions to the seven-letter rule are proper nouns.

I'm gonna put on my Ruth Padel hat and think about it again. For a verbose person like me, this is actual gold smelting compared to my alchemy.

Van G. when you put the 2 parts together, do you then consider it a sonnet or 2 kwansabas since each form comes with its own freedoms/constraints?


Prince Kwasi Mensah said...

This is a unique description of my favorite sport. I love the allusion to a musical instrument in the first line: the merging of wills and the clashing of cymbals. This is truly a work of genius.

ImageNations said...

beautiful piece...