Pen-Y-GWRYDD: To Tom Hughes, Esq.,

Charles Kingsley 1819 – 1875

There is no inn in Snowdon which is not awful dear,
Excepting Pen-y-gwrydd (you can't pronounce it, dear),
Which standeth in the meeting of noble valleys three-
One is the vale of Gwynant, so well beloved by me,
One goes to Capel-Curig, and I can't mind its name,
And one it is Llanberris Pass, which all men knows the same;
Between which radiations vast mountains does arise,
As full of tarns as sieves of holes, in which big fish will rise,
That is, just one day in the year, if you be there, my boy,
Just about ten o'clock at night; and then I wish you joy.
Now to this Pen-y-gwrydd inn I purposeth to write,
(Axing the post town out of Froude, for I can't mind it quite),
And to engage a room or two, for let us say a week,
For fear of gents, and Manichees, and reading parties meek,
And there to live like fighting-cocks at almost a bob a day,
And arterwards toward the sea make tracks and cut away,
All for to catch the salmon bold in Aberglaslyn pool,
And work the flats in Traeth-Mawr, and will, or I'm a fool.
And that's my game, which if you like, respond to me by post;
But I fear it will not last, my son, a thirteen days at most.
Flies is no object; I can tell some three or four will do,
And John Jones, Clerk, he knows the rest, and ties and sells 'em too.
Besides of which I have no more to say, leastwise just now,
And so, goes to my children's school and 'umbly makes my bow.

Eversley, 1857.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011


Charles Kingsley

Charles Kingsley was a priest of the Church of England, a university professor, historian and novelist. more…

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