ABOUT THIS EPISODE
We have conversations with people about a poem that has been a friend to them. In exchange we make them a gift: a unique recording of their chosen poem, inspired by the conversation and their thoughts and feelings about the poem.
The Poetry Exchange takes place in a range of venues and settings, featuring public visitors and special guests.
In this episode, Angela talks about the poem that has been a friend to her – ‘The force that through the green fuse' by Dylan Thomas.
We’re delighted to feature ‘The force that through the green fuse drives the flower’ in this episode and would like to thank Weidenfeld and Nicolson for granting us permission to share the poem in this way.
You can find ‘The force that through the green fuse drives the flower’ in The Collected Poems of Dylan Thomas: the Centenary Edition, published by Weidenfeld and Nicolson, copyright holder The Dylan Thomas Trust.
Angela visited The Poetry Exchange at Manchester Central Library, as part of the celebrations of International Mother Languages Day in the city.
Many thanks to our partners Manchester Libraries, Archives Plus, The Manchester Writing School at Manchester Metropolitan University and Manchester UNESCO City of Literature.
Angela is in conversation with The Poetry Exchange team members, Michael Shaeffer and Fiona Bennett.
‘The force that through the green fuse drives the flower' by Dylan Thomas
The force that through the green fuse drives the flower
Drives my green age; that blasts the roots of trees
Is my destroyer.
And I am dumb to tell the crooked rose
My youth is bent by the same wintry fever.
The force that drives the water through the rocks
Drives my red blood; that dries the mouthing streams
Turns mine to wax.
And I am dumb to mouth unto my veins
How at the mountain spring the same mouth sucks.
The hand that whirls the water in the pool
Stirs the quicksand; that ropes the blowing wind
Hauls my shroud sail.
And I am dumb to tell the hanging man
How of my clay is made the hangman’s lime.
The lips of time leech to the fountain head;
Love drips and gathers, but the fallen blood
Shall calm her sores.
And I am dumb to tell a weather’s wind
How time has ticked a heaven round the stars.
And I am dumb to tell the lover’s tomb
How at my sheet goes the same crooked worm.
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