Tuesday, 28 April 2009

Discarded in translation II

Below I referred to the anger the subject people would have felt at times about the erring impositions of the colonial power. Of course they'd also feel: shame, resentment, superiority, amusement, fear, resignation:

'The silly buggers just don't know what they're doing!'

'Ay, but they can do it. And the buggers do do it anyway, see bach.

But there 'ou are i'n'it?'

(This last phrase being my favourite expression of Welsh fatalism, always accompanied by a shrug).

In a slim volume of poetry called 'What is a Welshman?' R.S. Thomas ruminates to great effect on these emotions. I would quote one poem in particular but I don't have my copy. So you've got off lightly there.

If I had the poetic skill and imagination I would write a collection of poems entitled: 'What is a Chav?'. The time feels ripe for such an exploration.

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