Sounds of Christmas. And Winter.


Since we first heard Dylan Thomas read his “A Child’s Christmas in Wales” I’ve made a point (even if I can’t get anybody else to sit still for 20 minutes) to listen every year this time to this lyrical account of one small boy’s remembrance as much of winter as of Christmas.

The use of language is luscious, but you have to keep a close ear to hear around the Welsh turning of the words.

If you’ve never enjoyed this before, in my opinion (not shared by all in my family) it is worth a third of an hour of your time.

Dylan Thomas, 1952: A Child’s Christmas in Wales, A Story – Recorded at Steinway Hall, NY

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Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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  1. I loved “A Child’s Christmas in Wales” when I heard it on radio many, many years ago. It inspired me to visit Wales and appreciate that unique culture, especially the music events. (If I could spell Ested…..) I’d include it here! Thank you for this post. I’ll revisit it and listen to the recording when I have more time after Christmas!

  2. I listened and enjoyed, even though my computer’s volume wasn’t loud enough and I missed many phrases. I had not read or heard it before, although the title is very familiar. Thanks for the link!