By Carroll Ann Dunn in England:
Wednesday 18th June 2014
The fans had come to Sheffield
To see their idols play,
Their chants were loud but happy
On that fatal April day.
The fans were all excited,
convinced their team would win;
Police had packed them tighter
And ever tighter in.
The crush grew suffocating
And fans soon realised
A tragedy was happening
Before their very eyes.
Though pressed against the railings
Like cattle in a pound,
Some fans were helping others
Climb out to safer ground;
Though they could hardly breathe,
They hoisted children high,
Passed them along to safety
Then stayed behind to die.
The inquest (well, the first one)
Claimed ‘Accidental Death’;
An insult on an injury
That took away our breath.
Through all their bruising battles
They were bloodied but unbowed;
They brought us a new unity,
They did our city proud;
They showed us our true colours
These loved ones of the dead,
To find some kind of peace of mind,
To help put pain to bed.
Will we walk with these families,
Now that the end’s in sight
For justice for the ninety six?
Will we? Too fucking right.
Carol Ann Dunn was born and raised in Liverpool but has lived in Leeds for over 30 years, working as a teacher and trainer across West Yorkshire. A singer of both traditional and choral music, she began writing poetry and ballads on a course at Maddy Prior‘s Stones Barn and does so on subjects that are important to her, such as this one.
Well Versed is edited by Jody Porter.
UK: Hillsborough disaster inquest reveals safety violations by stadium operator: here.
Hillsborough inquest: police admit Sun report of fans looting corpses was false. Former inspector admits police were ‘playing Russian roulette’ with fans’ lives as disaster at ‘death trap’ entry was foreseeable: here.
Police pushed fans back into deadly crush during Hillsborough disaster, inquest hears: here.
The police match commander in charge during the 1989 Hillsborough football stadium disaster admitted that his failure to close a tunnel leading to the terraces “was the direct cause of the deaths of 96 people.” This is the first time that former Chief Superintendent David Duckenfield has accepted responsibility for causing the deaths: here.