Walking in Cader Idris

Englynion-style Poems

Englynion (plural of Englyn) are an ancient Welsh verse-form, they are typically composed of any number of short three-line stanzas.

Walking in Cader Idris

We started out in the dull morning,
Grey were the clouds over Tal-y-llyn –
Straight seemed the path from Minffordd.

The cŵm rose, shrouded in haze –
A dispassionate giant,
Humbly we strode to its arms.

Ahead stretched meandering paths –
Forces of nature both seeding and fading
Appeared in each boulder and crevice.

Dauntless we clambered through scree-fall
Across rivers and hill-sides,
Like pilgrims with grim resolution.

Untouched and untamed down the ages,
Save by mild grazing cattle,
This landscape seems boundless and timeless.

Hard to recall in the silence of mists,
Urban sounds, whir and frenzy –
Other-worldly it seemed and ethereal.

The eye seems to glimpse apparitions,
Is Llywelyn camped awaiting the Saeson?
Does Pwyll seek his companions?

But the mists become kiosks and signage,
As we leave not with memories –
But with dreams wild and restless.

Cader Idris – More properly Cadair Idris (the chair or seat of Idris), part of a mountainous range in North West Wales possibly named after an ancient Welsh hero.
Minffordd – Meaning ‘edge of the road’.
Tal-y-llyn – A ‘llyn’ or lake (‘tal’ signifies a lofty or high location).
Cŵm – In Welsh a valley, but also a geological term for a formation in the shape of a cone with a depression in the centre.
Llywelyn – Llywelyn ap Gruffudd, the last Prince of Wales – killed in a skirmish with English forces in 1282.
Saeson – In Welsh, a derivative of ‘Saxon’ specifically meaning ‘Englishmen’.
Pwyll – A figure from the legendary tales ‘Y Mabinogi’ or ‘The Mabinogion’.