The Long Field burrows deep into the Welsh countryside to tell how this small country became a big part of an American writer’s life. Petro twines her story around that of Wales by viewing both through the lens of hiraeth, a Welsh word that’s famously hard to translate, deriving from an old usage meaning ‘long field’, but is also the name for the bone-deep longing for something or someone – a home, culture, language, or a younger self. The Long Field braids memoir with the essential hiraeth stories of Wales, and in doing so creates a radical new vision of place and belonging.
Pamela Petro (Nonfiction, MFA Writing Faculty) is a writer, artist, and educator. She works in both research nonfiction and memoir—often braiding the two together—and as a visual artist works with experimental forms of photography. In addition to the MFA, she teaches creative writing at Smith College and is the Director of the Dylan Thomas Summer School at the University of Wales, Trinity St David. Her essays have been published in Lumina, The Paris Review, Granta, Slab, and Harvard Review Online.