I call it a track – it’s a lane – because I feel like a pilgrim every time I go up it from my partner’s farmhouse, Cefnymeysydd Isaf, which is hidden away amid a woodland of oak and ash. In 2019, we made a book of my poems and his watercolour paintings, which was titled […]
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Secret Britain: Unearthing Our Mysterious Past

Amy Aed discovers worlds and wonders right beneath her feet

PUBLISHED ON: 27/01/21

CATEGORY: Reviews

Secret Britain: Unearthing Our Mysterious Past is an informative, immersive book, into which the author weaves poetry, dusting old stories with magic. …

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The Works of Gwerful Mechain [A Broadview Anthology of British Literature edition]

Chris Moss notes that sex and the sacred were sweaty bedfellows in Medieval literature, and delights in these vivacious and deftly constructed translations that positively bounce along, shining a light on this worthy, if less prolific, rival to Chaucer and Dafydd ap Gwilym

PUBLISHED ON: 26/01/21

CATEGORY: Reviews

As every schoolgirl or boy lucky enough to be introduced to Chaucer knows, sex and the sacred were sweaty bedfellows during the Medieval period. If th …

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Welsh Writing in English, 1536–1914, The First Four Hundred Years (The Oxford Literary History of Wales: Volume 3)

Stephen Wade praises a book of sheer comprehensiveness, at once a compendious resource for reference use and a good read, packed with profiles of writers great and small, and with an emphasis on neglected or unknown female writers

PUBLISHED ON: 26/01/21

CATEGORY: Reviews

In 1811, Harriet Browne wrote some original verse on folded sheets of paper, the subject being Deganwy Castle. Her Liverpool family moved to Denbighsh …

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The Lives and Extraordinary Adventures of Fifteen Tramp Writers from the Golden Age of Vagabondage

Chris Moss finds that there is something romantic and true about the fourteen men and one woman who lived first, wrote afterwards, and saw in the tramping life a mode of being that was more meaningful than home-focused domestic existence

PUBLISHED ON: 03/11/20

CATEGORY: Reviews

Jim Phelan, in collection of Ian Cutler   An extensive list of words for people of no fixed abode in the introduction to this book reminds us how …

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Well-laid Hedges and Cider

Jim Pratt failed all his exams and was gently advised by his father to get a job. He recalls his first forestry posting at Osbaston, near the council’s rubbish tip in Monmouth, in 1960

PUBLISHED ON: 03/11/20

CATEGORY: Memoir

‘Coming to Mrs Wallet’s?’ Tom Johns was lighting his bicycle lamp, shielding the rather damp match that he had taken from a small tin and struck on hi …

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Barry Island: The Making of a Seaside Playground c1790–1965

How Penarth beat Biarritz Barry. Chris Moss traces the posh eighteenth-century roots of the working-class resort

PUBLISHED ON: 03/11/20

CATEGORY: Reviews

Some British seaside resorts double as lazy jokes. Skegness, Blackpool and Clacton-on-Sea are names that trip off the tongue when there’s chatter abou …

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Lest We Forget

Wanda Zyborska writes about HM Stanley, Denbigh, memorialisation and art, asking, How can we have equality without diversity in our cultural representations?

PUBLISHED ON: 28/07/20

CATEGORY: Column, Opinion

The recent actions of Black Lives Matter (BLM) protesters tearing down statues of the slave owner Edward Colston in Bristol has drawn public attention …

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Early Twentieth-century Welsh Plays in English, Vol 1: ‘A Dirty Broth’

Chris Moss assesses how this anthology of classic plays (including Taffy by Caradoc Evans) identifies the factors that deprived Wales of a recognisable tradition of playwriting and how these three plays share themes of religion, community, identity and family

PUBLISHED ON: 28/07/20

CATEGORY: Reviews

The first volume of a two-book series devoted to Welsh writing for the theatre,  A Dirty Broth, contains the complete texts of just three plays. You m …

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Saints and Lodgers: Poems of WH Davies

Chris Moss identifies something of Newport in the original Supertramp who belonged to no poetry school

PUBLISHED ON: 28/07/20

CATEGORY: Reviews

I am the Poet Davies, William, I sin without a blush or blink: I am a man that lives to eat; I am a man that lives to drink   Thus, with the easy …

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