My poem 'Vetch Field Elegy' has been included in a recently-published history of the Sandfields area of Swansea.
Blood and Thunder, Rough and Tumble, published by the Sandfields Community Association, is the first ever attempt at getting the story of the Sandfields down in print. When recently interviewed by the South Wales Evening Post, the book's author Andrew Vollans said "there is evidence to suggest that the area we know as Sandfields has been populated for thousands of years...[and although] Sandfields, Swansea does not exist officially as a geographical area, nor does it have a specific postcode...it clearly exists in the minds of its inhabitants and in the hearts of those who hail from the area."
My emotional connection with the Sandfields (and Swansea City Football Club) began as a 10 year old, when my stepfather took me down to the Vetch Field for a less-than-glamorous FAW Cup cup tie against Barry Town. The game finished 1-1, but I decided that the raw emotion displayed by an air-punching Tony Bird after he scored the equalising goal that night was reason enough for me to start calling myself a Swans fan.
The poem included in Blood and Thunder, Rough and Tumble is my elegy to the now-demolished Vetch Field, vacated by the club when they moved to the shiny new Liberty Stadium in Landore in 2005. Although I have many other great Sandfields memories, formed during the five years I lived as a student at 18 Bond Street, none compare to those 90-minute segments spent at that beloved old tin-shed.
The book is available now, priced £10, from Uplands Bookshop (27 Uplands Crescent, Swansea, SA2 0NX). Alternatively you can order a copy by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Swansea Museum will host an accompanying exhibition from the 12th June to 31st July.