Dylan Thomas on the Wales Coastal Walk

The launch this year of the completed Wales Coastal Path has produced a new book by Jon Gower as well as numerous newspaper articles. One in Mr Murdoch’s flagship Sunday paper described Dylan as a “…drunkard and sometime poet…” which just displayed the ignorance  of the media who would not want the truth to get in the way of a good story.

The online Guardian has an audio slideshow which has a great piece about Number 5 and the Boathouse at Laugharne featuring the voices of Anne Haden and Jon Tregenna. However, there is nothing about the walks which are on a separate link or pictures of the stunning coastal scenery between the two! It’s still worth a look online

Climate Change in Verse

If you have a concern about Climate Change and a love of poetry then the Pontardawe Arts Centre was the place to be in early June 2012 for And This is Global Warming with readings from Elin ap Hywel, Sue Richardson, Dafydd Wyn, Emily Hinshelwood and the winners of Awel Aman Tawe’s Climate Change Poetry Competition.

Sue Richardson was at the Dylan Thomas Birthplace last October for the International Festival of Words. She draws on her experiences in some of the colder parts of the world and is passionate about climate change and how it is affecting the world.

There is no charge for entry but advisable to reserve tickets on 01792 863722

Published in: on 22 May, 2012 at 9:04 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Tony hatches a new book

Dylan Thomas once, when describing A Visit to America,  referred to the list of visiting lecturers to include “…fat poets with slim volumes…”. Tony Webb is a well built man and his first book of poems, lyrics and short stories – Down a Sparrow Lane - is certainly fatter than Dylan’s 18 Poems.

Nonetheless it is a delightful read which draws on his past and particularly his years of growing up in the east of Swansea. The book launch at the Brunswick in Swansea was a memorable evening of music, readings and laughter. All the better for the introduction by poet Malcolm Parr being half way through the evening on account of him disappearing to the loo.

Tony is perhaps better known as the front man for the Swansea folk/rock band Sparrow Lane and the book contains a number of lyrics to songs that he has written. The short stories include He Only Swore in Welsh which tells of his early life living close to his grandfather.

Unlike Dylan’s obtuse early poems Tony’s are easy to understand and are drawn from a lifetime living in Swansea.

Even his adventures further afield as in London, New Year’s Eve convince him there is no place like home. And home is not all roses – The Boy in the Subway is a tale of our time – sad and haunting.

Tony will be appearing at the Dylan Thomas Birthplace in October – don’t miss it!

Down a Sparrow Lane is available at Uplands Bookshop and from the author tonywebb56@gmail.com of the publishers Pinewood Press jackielyndon@ntlworld.com priced just £6

Red Carpet Film Premiere at Number 5

A new short film – The Poet - by student film maker Hanna Brustad – has its premiere on 11th May (7.30pm – free entry but bring a bottle) at 5 Cwmdonkin Drive – the house in which it was filmed. The film is a story of a poet in the 1930s who makes a life changing decision. Find out more

Published in: on 6 May, 2012 at 10:24 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Poets from a Hundred Lawns – poetry group

Poets from a Hundred Lawns is the new poetry group at the Dylan Thomas Birthplace which meets on the middle Wednesday of each month (next meetings 13th June/ 18th July 7.30pm). The group is a Stanza of The Poetry Society and carries on the tradition of Wednesday evening gatherings that the teenage Dylan started with his father’s encouragement back in the Roaring Twenties. Further information and contact details

Poetry courses to follow in Dylan’s footsteps

A new weekly poetry and writing course based at 5 Cwmdonkin Drive – the birthplace and home of Dylan Thomas – aims to encourage new and aspiring writers to express themselves through their work.

 The course “Poetry – to begin at the beginning” is the first in a series of ten week long courses being run by Anne and Geoff Haden of Dylan Thomas House in conjunction with the poet and writer Peter Thabit Jones who is an acknowledged expert on the work of Dylan Thomas and has lectured and taught all over the world.

The courses start on Thursday 23rd September (10.00am to 12.00) and for the first five participants to enrol there is a discounted course fee of £35 instead of the normal £75.

Says Mr Thabit Jones, “Many people want to write and don’t know where to start, so the aim of the course is to explore some aspects of writing and poetry and to help participants develop their own style.

“We want the course to be at the level of the participants who will be encouraged to develop their own work and to explore their own creativity.

“Not only will the course allow people to write in the house where Dylan produced over two thirds of his published output but we will also explore the local area including Cwmdonkin Park and the Uplands for further inspiration.”

Mr Jones is the founder of the international poetry magazine The Seventh Quarry and has recently completed the narration of a DVD Dylan Thomas Walking Tour of Greenwich Village, which he produced in collaboration with the late Aeronwy Thomas – Dylan’s daughter – on behalf of the Welsh Assembly Government in New York.

Anne Haden says “I’m really excited that Peter has agreed to run these courses as I know that there is a demand in Swansea from both the aspiring and the more experienced poets and writers.

“Poetry was once the province of the elite but Dylan showed that an ordinary guy can produce great work and, although we can’t bring Dylan back, we can create some of the environment that helped him be so prolific in his early years”.

“Later in the year we will be announcing a series of weekend courses in a number of different creative arts.

Peter Thabit Jones   01792 774070 or info@peterthabitjones.com

Anne Haden   01792 472555 or info@5cwmdonkindrive.com

Peter Thabit Jones leads a discussion at a poetry reading with members of The Seventh Quarry magazine

Published in: on 8 September, 2010 at 10:31 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Two festivals, two languages, worlds apart

Last week was the start of the festival season in and around Wales and I could not have witnessed two more diverse events only 50 miles or so apart.

Remember that I’m writing this in the knowledge that, although Dylan spoke only English, (more…)

Bob Zimmerman, Dylan and John Lennon – what’s in a name?

Oh dear – I’ve just offended an American!

I stumbled across a blog called the Ten Minute Ramble with some videos of Bob Dylan and just pointed out that he took his name from our own Dylan.

If I did! (more…)

Under 30? Written any published work? Want £30,000?

CALL FOR ENTRIES FOR £30,000 DYLAN THOMAS PRIZE

The world’s biggest literary prize for young writers

Entries are invited each year for the world’s biggest literary award for young writers – the £30,000 ($45,000) Dylan Thomas Prize – which will be awarded for the  best published work in the English language by an author under the age of 30 from any country in the world.

(more…)

Published in: on 10 April, 2010 at 10:51 pm  Comments (3)  
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Dylan Thomas and James Joyce now closer again

Dawn over Swansea Bay and the Swansea Cork ferry waits at Mumbles Head to dock

Yesterday’s early morning sight of the Swansea Cork ferry looming out of the mist off  Mumbles Head got me thinking about our Irtish literary links.

The new service is in operation for the first time in three years and its appearance reminded me of Dylan’s admiration of James Joyce and Brendan Behan. (more…)

Published in: on 8 April, 2010 at 10:55 pm  Leave a Comment  
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