In my craft or sullen art

Dylan Thomas

1914 –1953

In my craft or sullen art
Exercised in the still night
When only the moon rages
And the lovers lie abed
With all their griefs in their arms,
I labour by singing light
Not for ambition or bread
Or the strut and trade of charms
On the ivory stages
But for the common wages
Of their most secret heart.

Not for the proud man apart
From the raging moon I write
On these spindrift pages
Nor for the towering dead
With their nightingales and psalms
But for the lovers, their arms
Round the griefs of the ages,
Who pay no praise or wages
Nor heed my craft or art.

When I was about 19, my closest friend at that time introduced me to the astonishing music of a group that lived on a commune and was seeking a new way of living in harmony with nature. As a hirsute young idealist, I was thrilled by their poetics and their politics. They called themselves, intriguingly,  Perth County Conspiracy (does not exist):

One of the group members was Cedric Smith, who later became a renowned Canadian actor:

In the clip linked below, at the 2:52 mark, Cedric Smith recites the Dylan Thomas poem “In my craft or sullen art.” It’s a remarkable performance that conveys both the astonishing depth of the poet’s craft and the brilliant performance capacities of the actor. I want to share this remarkable rendering with you:


Robert McBryde Author: hippies, pop music, 1960s, 1970s, psychedelic, blogging, social media,  CBC radio, literary non-fiction, vignettes and sketches, immigrant experience, living in Quebec and in France,  childhood and animal stories, creative memoirs, satire, autobiography, family relations, raising children, aging, facing death, travel, social commentary, love and marriage, translation: English-French; French-English

Publisher’s Note:  Funny, manic, and wistful… self-deprecating creative nonfiction…The author, Robert McBryde, a professional translator, has been compared to David Sedaris for the sometimes-snarky autobiographical satire characterizing his literary sketches. Many of the stories in his new book, titled My Time with You Has Been Short but Very Funny, have been featured on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation radio network.


Author’s Note:

I’ve written a new book of creative non-fiction titled My Time with You Has Been Short but Very Funny, recently published and now on the market. The book is based on stories that I told over the years as a writer/ broadcaster and host on CBC radio based in Quebec City, Canada.

The book is available via my website. The purchase links are at the bottom of the home page.

Normally I will post at least two blogs per week, often Wednesdays and Fridays mornings EST and at other moments as well, such as today. Stay tuned!

If you purchase a book via the platform of your choice, please leave a review!

Here is a link to a cool group book review blog:

My Time With You Has Been Short But Very Funny, a review by Di


And this is a link to Goodreads. A great place to learn about new books and to read reviews.

Di’s review of My Time with You Has Been Short but Very Funny


And, finally, a  review from Amazon…


A Spirited Dive into Life’s Laughter and Tears (

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Happy reading! 😊

Your friend,