Saturday, November 11, 2006

New Zealand versus France ...

Did I tell you ...?

The New Zealand All Black Rugby team is playing France in France tonight.

I wondered how I would feel about the French commentary, as we're watching the game on the French channel Antenne 2 ... however, when the French commentator said 'Ai ai ai ai ... ai ai ai ai!' as Daniel Carter touched down for a try, then converted it - making the score 23 NZ 3 France ... well, I felt a certain amount of pride and pleasure.

Yes, I am generally a citizen of the world, curious and interested in every culture ... but rugby is quite something else.

It occured to me that there was an Armistice Day poem waiting to be written and so I did ... while I was lying on the lounge floor, making do with red wine as opposed to some terrible New Zealand beer ...

I titled it Armistice Day

I come from the land
where 'gods' in black jerseys
stalk green fields in other countries
chasing a ball
and winning.

That 'same god-type',
stalked mud-filled Flanders Fields,
winning back European ground from the enemy.
... just ask that village called Mesen

And today we remember them.

Forgive me the poetry but the rugby is filling my homesick little kiwi heart with so much pride and pleasure.

And Di disappears as the second half starts.
An update to follow ... meanwhile, a trip down memory lane to one of the biggest of our rugby 'gods' ... Jonah Lomu.


paris parfait said...

Great poem! Jonah is a star - so tragic that his health issues now keep him from playing. My husband and I watched the game and NZ deserved to win. They played magnificently! The French players gave it their all, but were simply outplayed. Also, the French don't like playing in the rain (remember the World Cup game against England?) Congrats to the All-Blacks!

woman wandering said...

Thanks Tara ... I was a wee bit shy about posting it but I'm working on a WWI project and it was heartbreaking to imagine that same 'kiwi spirit' in khaki out on Flanders Fields.

Grandad almost died on the Somme and then was probably involved in the Battle of Mesen.

Jonah is a wee delight, isn't he.

You did make me smile with your 'the French don't like playing in the rain' ...