by Michael Keeling

To maximize our mortal days
we need, we are told,
to exercise in many ways
so, if I may make so bold,
just turn the television on
to a frantic football match,
find an arduous marathon,
watch anglers land their catch.

Switch channels to the boxing,
bob and weave and fend,
seek an eight that you are coxing
coming round the Surrey bend.

You’re in the deep at Newlands,
the ball is hit sky high
the fielder’s bloody dropped it,
you can hear the bowler’s cry.

Let a home run from a Yankee
make you break out in a sweat
dab your forehead with your hankie
the game’s not over yet..

Let wrestlers, when they lose their cool,
put a smile upon your lips,
a length or two of the swimming pool
does wonders for your hips.

You can cycle up a mountain side
do all the time trials too
take up white-water rafting,
paddle your own canoe.

What really shows the adrenaline flows
is the diving from great heights,
just close your eyes and hold your nose,
it may give you sleepless nights.

Pool and snooker, games of darts
even the sport of Kings,
gymnasts bending body parts
and dangling from rings

There’s hockey to fall back on,
both on and off the ice,
you can even bet a stack on
a game of poker dice.

There are running tracks and field sports
(beware the flying hammer)
you can sail right out of many ports
on a really windy jammer.

Basket ball and tennis,
you can take part in them all,
pretend you’re men or women
chasing after every ball.

End off your day
with a corps de ballet,
entrechat to bed,
pas de deux with your loving spouse
and you’ll never end up dead!


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