Dewsbury teacher writes book of poems about life, love and Leeds United

Being a Leeds United fan certainly has its ups and downs. But for one life-long supporter, who was feeling disillusioned with real life as well as LUFC and lockdowns, poetry was where he sought solace.

Monday, 27th December 2021, 7:00 am
Lifelong Leeds United fan Mike Keddie, a teacher in Dewsbury, with his book The Poetry of Pain

Dewsbury teacher Mike Keddie has written a book of poems on life, love and Leeds United.

He found writing down his thoughts about his beloved team helped him to cope with what he calls a "mid-life crisis", plus the deaths of two close family members, losing his job and his overall mental health.

Marathon runner Mike, 53, also a keen Parkrunner, has self-published "The Poetry of Pain – Following Leeds United and Other Tales of Woe".

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Mike, who lived in Seacroft as a child when his dad Tony was vicar at St Richard’s Church in the 70s, said: "The creation of the book has not happened quickly.

"It has in fact taken 16 years of musings, ramblings and writing things down, to come to this.

“Aspects of my life were not always as easy or enjoyable as I would have hoped and this is an attempt to make sense of it all and to draw a line under a difficult period in my life.

“Like a lot of people, I have struggled personally with a few things including grief after the death of my mum and young nephew, plus a career crisis.

"I also know lockdown has been tough for lots of people.

“Added to this, I am also a lifelong Leeds fan, which in itself can be painful; yet also glorious at times.

“I went with my brother Dave when we were kids and it was always the best of times, whatever the score.”

Mike added: "Life can be tough. But thanks to a certain person, life as a Leeds fan is looking up.

"Maybe my next book will be called 'How Marcelo Bielsa saved my life'."

Mike, who is studying for an MSc in computer science alongside teaching, has two children, Mariella and Raph, and is married to Marie-Claire, a teacher at Notre Dame Catholic Sixth Form College in Leeds.

He said all proceeds from the book will be donated to the Teenage Cancer Trust at St James’s Hospital in Leeds, which looked after his nephew, Joe Collins, also a huge Leeds fan, who sadly died at the age of 23 from a rare cancer.

The book is available to buy from Truman Books in Farsley, Leeds and Read Books in Holmfirth, where it can also be bought online.