Many years ago I worked with four guys in a small section of a large office. Three were golfers and spent much of their time talking about their tedious recreation. My colleague Martin and I, both stubborn non-golfers, struggled unsuccessfully to ignore these endless hole-by-hole homilies.
Time has passed as have the three golfers, but Martin and I remain in touch. Today I received a letter from him in which he boldly informed me that he has taken up ... golf.
Golf. The very word makes me shudder.
Martin seduced by golf!
Could I be next?
Here’s a delightful poem on the subject by Sir John Betjeman.
How straight it flew, how long it flew,
It clear'd the rutty track
And soaring, disappeared from view
Beyond the bunker's back -
A glorious, sailing, bounding drive
That made me glad I was alive.
And down the fairway, far along
It glowed a lonely white;
I played an iron sure and strong
And clipp'd it out of sight,
And spite of grassy banks between
I knew I'd find it on the green.
And so I did. It lay content
Two paces from the pin;
A steady putt and then it went
Oh, most surely in.
The very turf rejoiced to see
That quite unprecedented three.
Ah! Seaweed smells from sandy caves
And thyme and mist in whiffs,
In-coming tide, Atlantic waves
Slapping the sunny cliffs,
Lark song and sea sounds in the air
And splendour, splendour everywhere.