Liz and I are just back from travels that including time in Wales with dear friends and a chance to catch up with some of the festivities surrounding the centenary of the birth of the beloved Welch poet, Dylan Thomas.
Being in Wales—with the often raw but always real weather, the green patchwork landscape, the lilting accents and the marvelous people—certainly brings the man’s words to brilliant life. This from “Fern Hill”:
All the sun long it was running, it was lovely, the hay
Fields high as the house, the tunes from the chimneys, it was air
And playing, lovely and watery
And fire green as grass.
The view from the famous Boat House, where he lived with his family, and his small writing shed, a magical spot on the hill above, seems literally created from the words.
We were also enchanted by an excellent performance of his “Return Journey,” a story based on his walking through Swansea after it was bombed during World War II.
And this, another bit from “Fern Hill” which is found on a stone in the park near his birthplace:
Oh as I was young and easy in the mercy of his means
Time held me green and dying
Though I sang in my chains like the sea.
I plan to read more of his work over the next few weeks and, even better, listen to some of the recordings he made to more fully appreciate the music of the language he uses. Regardless, this sentiment seen on a local billboard in Swansea seems to say it all!