Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Adelina Patti theatre, 1901

Dr Carole Reeves found this poem in the archives at the National Library of Wales. It’s not attributed to anyone so perhaps there was a court poet in the castle! The accompanying photograph shows the Patti Theatre at the same date.

From limestone ridge and mountain crest
The landscape seems a vast unrest.
Disturbed the face of Nature shows
The rocky vale where Tawé flows
With leaps and bounds – ‘mid storm and spray
It rushes on its noisy way.
The lofty skyline bounds the scene
With rolling uplands in between
The river’s marge, the hill’s recess
With verdure deck the loveliness.
The stately Black Rock rears its head
Above the river’s rugged bed.
The winter scene more grandeur shows
Than Summer, but when sunshine glows,
The vales with green and gold are fair,
And cool and sweet the mountain air.
Yet Nature in her wildest mood
Can best be read and understood
By force of contrast – look, ‘tis Art
Has played an open-handed part,
And raised amid this glorious space
A lordly house of light and grace –
A gem of art in nature set
That one shall see and ne’er forget,
Upstanding in its stately pride
It dominates the countryside –
A palace in the wilderness,
A feudal keep in modern dress
That Merlin’s magic wand might raise
Had he been living in these days,
Or fairies building in a night
Had brought this beauteous place to light.
And yet enchantment reared the walls,
And filled with luxury its halls.
The power of a voice achieved
More than magician e’er conceived,
And raised a castle high and strong
By aid of music and of song.

(This looks like a poem written by Ethel Rosate-Lunn, former maid to Adelina Patti who became known as the "poetess of the Tawe". I may be wrong. Does anyone know the author? - Ann)

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