AWARD-winning author Mike Jenkins will launch his latest poetry collection – From Aberfan t Grenfell – when he is special guest at the Cellar Bards November event in Cardigan, on Friday, November 30.

It’s the final Bards meet of 2018. Doors and the bar open at 7.45pm, at the Cellar Bar, Quay Street. Entry is £3 and open mic spots are available.

Mike, who comes from Merthyr Tydfil, is widely published and is much in demand for his lively performances.

He has performed at the Hay Festival and the Aldeburgh Poetry Festival and has read and tutored at Ty Newydd, the National Writers' Centre for Wales. He has been co-editor of 'Red Poets', the annual magazine of left-wing poetry from Wales and beyond, for 25 years.

He frequently appears on radio and television and is known among Cardiff City football fans as the club's 'unofficial poet'.

Mike won Wales Book of the Year in 1998 for his collection of interlinked short stories Wanting to Belong. He has also won an Eric Gregory Award from the Society of Authors, The Young Writers Prize from the Welsh Arts Council and the John Tripp Award for Spoken Poetry.

Published by Culture Matters, From Aberfan t Grenfell features illustrations by Swansea artist Alan Perry.

Prof Matthew Jarvis, University of Wales Trinity St David said of this collection: “The book shows that Mike Jenkins’s sublime skills in dialect poetry continue to shine as brightly as ever, as he evokes a bravura array of voices from his Merthyr bro.

“Using his work to give speech to people without power, Jenkins’s poetry dramatizes the characters and struggles of a community—but also a community’s surviving capacity to raise its voices against the power-structures which cause it to suffer.

“Compassionate and incisive in equal measure, From Aberfan t Grenfell is required reading in an era of austerity.”

Open mic spots are always available at The Cellar Bards, Cardigan’s only regular spoken word event. The Bards welcome writers of poetry, short stories, micro-fiction and novels (maximum five minutes each).

People who want to read can put their names down at the door on the night. Or go along to hear Mike Jenkins, plus a variety of spoken word performances from the talented regulars.

Cellar Bards host, poet Dave Urwin, said: “We are very much looking forward to welcoming Mike to the Bards, he is always an excellent poet-performer. And it is always a pleasure to listen to the work of our talented local writers on the open mic as well.”