Tuesday, 26 October 2010

A poem for Dylan Thomas

Dylan and Caitlin with liquid lunch

If there's smoke there must be fire!

He'd probably be known today as Sir Dylan Thomas, perhaps even Lord Dylan of Laugharne*, and he would have been 96 tomorrow. A memorial stone to commemorate the life of Dylan Thomas, who died in New York less than 2 weeks after his 39th birthday, was unveiled in Westminster Abbey in 1982.

The poet spent the happiest days of his life with his family in Laugharne in their "house on stilts". His wife Caitlin died many years later in Italy. She was at that time married to an Italian count. However, as was her last wish, she was brought home and laid to rest next to Dylan in a Laugharne churchyard and there they now sleep "like two kippers in a box".

Song of Caitlin

I walk with you along the shores
And over the hills and through the vales
Of your darling homeland Wales
Where our brains have been dry-sucked
Of words and our minds are dead
As hammered nails. I keep

The best of your words locked-up
In my heart - those mad bad words
That flew like storm-tossed birds
Through the crying air that screams
And hammers these sand-ribbed shores
And dies in Laugharne's black trees.

*Laugharne is pronounced Larne


  1. I've spent many a gloomy afternoon in the bar in NYC where he drank himself to death - The White horse Tavern.

  2. For a mere Welshman to make it in to the list of "Top 20 Drunk American Writers" is quite an achievement.
    I'm sorry I couldn't join you in the bar in NYC to share the gloom. It would have been nice. But back to the chase. Unfortunately for Dylan a certain Doc "Milton with a winking needle" failed to do the trick this time round.
    But I reckon Dylan did OK. Four times he toured the USA - three times got back in one piece. I've been to the States twice. American hospitality, what I've seen in NY anyway, generosity knows no bounds! I love it.

  3. I'm appreciate your writing skill.Please keep on working hard.^^

  4. Winner, I will. But it's really not work. It's a passion.

  5. Particularly like "Wales ---- hammered nails".

    Sir Dylan? Probably. He even looks like Bob Geldof in the pic where he's lighting a fag.

  6. Thanks Dominic, by the way there are some amazingly lifelike photos of trees on winner's blog (text is in Chinese). Get to you soon, Gwilym


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