Poetry and Tennis ~ Gatherings from Ireland # 176

Rudyard Kipling’s, If, was one of the first poems to which I was introduced by my mother who was also responsible for inspiring my love of tennis.

Mother liked to listen to Wimbledon on the radio, even after we had got our first television in the 1960s. Her hero was Fred Perry, who won Wimbledon in 1934, 1935 and 1936,  and she often talked of how getting to hear the tennis was quite  an issue  as she had to do battle with her farming father who simply had  to hear the Livestock Report. As Mother recalled it, the Livestock Report always seemed to happen just as the tennis matches involving Fred Perry were poised at psychological moments!

Fred Perry Photo: Wikipedia
Fred Perry
Photo: Wikipedia

What a difference nowadays ~ I can be driving along and getting a point by point and grunt by grunt commentary from my son via his phone!

But, whatever the technological changes, the words of the poem If  remain  as meaningful as ever. I love this rendition from Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal:


Author: socialbridge

I am a sociologist and writer from Ireland. I have worked as a social researcher for 30 years and have had a lifelong passion for writing. My main research interests relate to health care and sense of place.

4 thoughts on “Poetry and Tennis ~ Gatherings from Ireland # 176”

  1. Was he the one who wrote Jungle Book? I loved that one. And by the way, I visited Ireland in 2008 and tramped all over the place there. That’s why I said I thought I had been to that beach. It looks so familiar. Maybe it wasn’t the exact same place, of course, it just brought back my wonderful memories of Ireland. There people there are so much nicer than here. 🙂

    1. Hi Carrie, yes it was Rudyard Kipling who wrote Jungle Book.
      Great to hear you visited Ireland and enjoyed the place and people. I suppose we pride ourselves on being friendly but I think it probably has a lot to do with the personalities of the visitors as well!

  2. Well, of course there are wonderful and nasty people every where, in every nook and cranny on earth. But believe me when I say, in general, you guys definitely can take pride in your “niceness” level. The rudeness you encounter here is absolutely mind numbing sometimes. The further out you go into the country, the nicer people get, and in the rural midwest. But in the cities, esp. along the coasts – grrrrrrr!

    1. I reckon I must have met the wonderful people in the cities when I was over there! I was due to set out for New York today for ten days or so but it wasn’t to be. I was soooooooooo looking forward to it BUT have decided to have a sort of American ten days here in Ireland to compensate! Writing to you is a good start to the day!

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