Friday, March 22, 2013

Day 22: Saunders Lewis

Today's poem is by Saunders Lewis, poet, dramatist, Nobel prize nominee, academic, and political nationalist.  Lewis was a co-founder of the Welsh nationalist party, Plaid Cymru.  He was a champion of the Welsh language and saw restoration of the language to primary status as critical to Wales' future.  You can read more about Lewis on his Wikipedia page at


Llonydd yw llyn y nos yn y cwm,
Yn ei gafn di-wynt;
Cwsg Oriön a’r Ddraig ar ei wyneb plwm,
Araf y cyfyd y llower a nofio'n gyntunus i’w hynt.

Wele’n awr awr ei dyrchafael.
Chwipyn pelydri dithau o’i blaen a phicell dy lam
O fôn i frig dan ei thrafael
Yn ymsaethu i galon y gwyll fel Cannwyll y Pasg dan ei fflam:
Ust, saif y nos o’th gylch yn y gangell glaear
Ac afrlladen nef yn croesi â’i bendith y ddaear.

The lake of night is still in the valley,
In its windless trough;
Orion and the Dragon sleep on its leaden face,
The moon rises slowly and swims drowsily on her way.

Behold now the hour of her ascension.
Immediately you shine before her with the lance of your leap
From root to tip under her journey
Shooting to the heart of darkness like the Easter Candle under its flame:
Hush, the night stands about you in the cool chancel
And the bread of heaven crosses the earth with its blessing.

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