The Fox by R. Williams Parry

A hundred paces ‘neath the mountain’s peak,

As the church bells of the foothills called to worship

And the inexhaustible sun of brilliant July

Beckoned to the mountain, — in that spot,

With silent trot on unsuspecting feet,

His rare magnificence stole into our view.

Ourselves motionless and out of breath,

For an instant paralyzed; as if a stone trinity

We stood, when in the midst of a carefree stride,

He too halted in surprise, and above

His hesitant front paw, the two stationary flames

Of his eyes fixed upon us.  Then, without haste or fear,

His russet fur slid slowly o’er the crest.

He appeared, he vanished, like a shooting star!

(Translation by D. Ll. Williams for 2004 St. David’s Day Dinner)

Original Welsh poem:  Y Llwynog

Ganllath o gopa’r mynydd, pan oedd clych
Eglwysi’r llethrau’n gwahodd tua’r llan,
Ac annrheuliedig haul Gorffennaf gwych
Yn gwahodd tua’r mynydd, – yn y fan,
Ar ddiarwybod droed a distaw duth,
Llwybreiddiodd ei ryfeddod prin o’n blaen
Ninnau heb ysgog ac heb ynom chwyth
Barlyswyd ennyd; megis trindod faen
Y safem, pan ar ganol diofal gam
Syfrdan y safodd yntau, ac uwchlaw
Ei untroed oediog dwy sefydlog fflam
Ei lygaid arnom. Yna heb frys na braw
Llithrodd ei flewyn cringoch dros y grib;
Digwyddodd, darfu, megis seren wîb.

R. Williams Parry (1924)

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