Illuminations: An Anthology of Welsh Short Prose

By Meic Stephens | Go to book overview

about Bishop Morgan 1; and I had a picture of him hung up at the front; he was dressed in the clerical garments of the period, all frills and pleats. At the end I asked whether there were any questions. Dafydd the Pandy is always very ready with his questions, and he put up his hand. 'Well, Dafydd,' I said, 'what's your question?' 'Is he a man or a preacher?' he asked. Nobody smiled. It was clear that the question for them was completely reasonable, and that as far as they were concerned I wasn't a man — like their fathers and grandfathers and uncles — but a preacher. And this is how I seem to them. I see a sign, when they think I'm not watching, that that one over there is trying to stick a pin into his neighbour, but do they know that I could show them tricks they have never even imagined, because in my younger days we had to rely much more on our own resources than children do today? And if they knew, would I lose respect and influence? Yes, that's my difficulty, to get to know these children as children, to get behind the angelic mask they all wear — children in their naughty and their good moods, their innocent and cruel tricks, their mindless pranks and sincere sympathy. To know them as children, and to be able to enter their world, there lies my only hope of leading them to the One who once walked upon 'the fair land of Judea', who could treat children as themselves because he was so like them, and thus was so wonderfully able to make them so like Him.

Yes, it's difficult for all these people in front of me to see me as myself and not as a preacher. If they did, would they be more ready to accept the Gospel I preach?

Ah well, the announcements are nearly at an end, and now I have to give out the next hymn.

Ar Ddisberod (Gwasg y Brython, 1954)


How to Choose and Treat a Wife

Harri Gwynn

Every now and again you come across a farmer who is also a bachelor. It may be that you feel he has a fine old life, especially if you are a youngish man. You may even find something rather

-77-

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Illuminations: An Anthology of Welsh Short Prose
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Preface vii
  • The Village School 1
  • Fear of the Sea 7
  • A Windy Night 9
  • The Late Lemuel Parry, Esq., J.P., O.B.E. 12
  • On Drowning a Cat 18
  • The House Across the Way 21
  • Weobley and St. Emilion 25
  • The Man in the Street 28
  • Old Dent 31
  • On Collecting Roads 34
  • 'their Land They Shall Lose' 42
  • The Red Flag 46
  • Strolling Players 50
  • One Sunday Afternoon 57
  • Salem 61
  • A Trip to the Circus 63
  • Thoughts on Coronation Day, 1953 68
  • From the Pulpit 72
  • How to Choose and Treat a Wife 77
  • To the Mountain 83
  • The Imperative Upon Me 88
  • Disenchantment 92
  • The Hiring Fair 94
  • The Man at Chapel House 97
  • Question and Answer 102
  • The Little Llandeilo Boots 105
  • My Last Day in Prison 108
  • A Discovery 118
  • A Land of Romance 121
  • Hi-Ho! 129
  • Ancestors 133
  • While Shaving 138
  • Of Time and Distance 141
  • A Methodist Deacon's Advice 146
  • Of Violets and Bells 148
  • Remembering Mrs Newbould 151
  • Good Morning, Lloyd 156
  • In Modesty and Trembling 162
  • Christmasn in the Valley 166
  • On Stammering 169
  • Butlins 172
  • A Millionaire 176
  • A Scene from Military Life 178
  • An Exile 180
  • The Fox Under Glass 183
  • A Doctor's Medicine 186
  • The Little Huts 189
  • Three Heads 191
  • On Memory 198
  • Uncle John's Boots 202
  • The Fur Coat 207
  • An Holy Kiss 214
  • Notes on Authors and Texts 217
  • Acknowledgements 238
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