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Keep Wales Tidy. Throw Your LItter in England. PDF Print E-mail
Written by Sherry   
Sunday, 30 November 2008 16:16
Years and years ago, when I was a boy, when there were wolves in Wales, and birds the color of red-flannel petticoats whisked past the harp-shaped hills, when we sang and wallowed all night and day in caves that smelt like Sunday afternoons in damp front farmhouse parlors, and we chased, with the jawbones of deacons, the English and the bears, before the motor car, before the wheel, before the duchess-faced horse, when we rode the daft and happy hills bareback, it snowed and it snowed. But here a small boy says: "It snowed last year, too. I made a snowman and my brother knocked it down and I knocked my brother down and then we had tea."

"But that was not the same snow," I say. "Our snow was not only shaken from white wash buckets down the sky, it came shawling out of the ground and swam and drifted out of the arms and hands and bodies of the trees; snow grew overnight on the roofs of the houses like a pure and grandfather moss, minutely -ivied the walls and settled on the postman, opening the gate, like a dumb, numb thunder-storm of white, torn Christmas cards."

If you heard a lyrical Welsh lilt as you read the above, then you read it properly. Dylan Thomas's famous depiction of his childhood town, Swansea, at Christmastime. Flavored with a soupcon of mild, whimsical anglophobia.

Actually since Swansea is a sea-side town on the Welsh Riviera (and sports a few struggling palm trees) real snow there is like a major snow in Seattle - hard to come by. But reality never stopped a good Welsh story-teller.

But the snow is shawling out of the ground here in Colorado. It revved up a couple hours ago and we've probably gotten 8 inches by now.

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