Illuminations: An Anthology of Welsh Short Prose

By Meic Stephens | Go to book overview

doorway. I wave to him. He too raises his hand with an even broader smile. I feel as if I am a leaf being borne along by the stream's current: I shall surely never see Bruce again.

Down in Reception there are about fifteen of us eating porridge. We change into our own clothes and put our belongings into our pockets. I get Olwen's Bible back at last. We stand in a row in alphabetical order, and for the last time I find myself last in the line, walking in the darkness towards the Main Gate under the warders' supervision. The small door in the middle of the big gate opens, and each one of us steps through it, one after the other, into the darkness of the great outside.

Maes Miliangel ( Gwasg Gee, 1974)


A Discovery

R. Tudur Jones

It was one evening. An evening in early September. What year? I don't know what year. Not last year nor the year before that. A quarter of a century ago, perhaps. But it might easily have been yesterday evening, except that it's now March. For time has nothing to do with it. It's an important part of the story that it can't be connected with any one specific day on the calendar.

But it was an evening in the month of September, for all that. A still evening without a leaf stirring. The kind of evening the sun hangs red and hesitant above the horizon and, in delaying its going down, persuades us that it's a sad thing to see the end of that particular day. And the smell of late hay lingering in the air and the bramble-bushes black with fruit. A cow's lowing mingled with the buzzing of small flies.

It was an evening that invited a spin. And so off I went across the Menai into Anglesey. The great bustle of summer and its visitors was over and the Anglesey roads empty. Turn right. Turn left. And within the blinking of an eye I was lost. But there's one splendid thing about the Isle of Anglesey. If the unfamiliar wayfarer gets lost, he knows that it's on Anglesey he's lost, and not that he's lost Anglesey. In

-118-

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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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