R S Thomas and Evans
Ronald Stuart Thomas was born in the March of 1913 in the Welsh capital Cardiff and published as R S Thomas. This little welsh number is from the book Poetry for Supper first published in 1958.
When I read this poem my first thought was for poor Evans, on his death bed, alone. Where were his family, friends; neighbours?
Then the macabre in my came out and made me think about the person in the cottage, talking to us about Evans; what was their story? Doctor, Stranger or…
Evans? Yes, many a time
I came down his bare flight
Of stairs into the gaunt kitchen
With its wood fire, where crickets sang
Accompaniment to the black kettle’s
Whine, and so into the cold
Dark to smother in the thick tide
Of night that drifted about the walls
Of his stark farm on the hill ridge.
It was not the dark filling my eyes
And mouth apalled me; not even the drip
Of rain like blood from the one tree
Weather-tortured. It was the dark
Silting the veins of that sick man
I left stranded upon the vast
And lonely shore of his bleak bed.