Cynddylan Poem and Lore Analysis

Topics: FolklorePoetry

The essay sample on Cynddylan dwells on its problems, providing a shortened but comprehensive overview of basic facts and arguments related to it. To read the essay, scroll down.

In Cynddylan, Thomas contrasts a farmer’s personality to farming after he has started using a tractor on everyday work on his land with before when all his farming was done by hand and tool. Cynddylans’ attitude towards nature has now been changed by this machine that helps him but masks the beauty of his surroundings.

Lore, on the other hand, is about a dedicated and traditional well experienced eighty-five year old farmer who sticks to the natural way of farming by paying to attention to all driven machines and prefers to stick with conventional methods to tend his soil throughout life.

In my essay I will compare this modernised farmer in ‘Cynddylan’ from this traditional and more respected farmer in ‘Lore’. I will show similarities and differences in accordance to the way both farmers look at the possible approaches to farming.

As R. S Thomas is the creator behind the two poems and characters, that have different opinions, I will try to understand What Thomas was trying to make stand out by comparing the two poems with each other. Cynddylan starts off on a very informal, conversational tone, “ah you should see Cynddylan on a tractor”.

Gone the old look that yoked him to the soil” This line gives us the impression the farmer has lost part of his traditional methods of farming because of this machine, and that he has become somewhat divorced from nature.

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“His nerves of metal and his blood oil” This line demonstrates to us how he become a whole new person because of the new devise, Cynddylan has now been turned into something he’s not. “The clutch curses but the gears obey” Thomas here has created a harsh ‘C’ sound by using the two words together to add emphasis on Cynddylans new selfish attitude. Out of the farmyard, scattering hens. Riding to work as a great man should’. Here Thomas creates a sarcastic tone to the reader saying how “scattering hens” and scaring them away is part of how a “great” farmer should operate.

Ted Hughes Tractor

“He is a knight at arms breaking the field’s mirror of silence, emptying the wood of foxes and squirrels and bright jays. ” Thomas now has shown how the tractor “breaks the silence” and disrupts the tranquillity of the nature, viciously destroying the farmlands wildlife and his relationship with it. The sun comes over the tall trees kindling all the hedges, but not for him who runs his engine on a different fuel” Cynddylan now has become completely separated from his companion called nature, he has chosen the machine over his environment, and he himself once ran on the same fuel as these trees, by working in the sun and growing with his land in peace and serenity. And all the bills are singing, bills wide in vain; As Cynddylan passes proudly up the lane.

The birds are now in devastation and disgust at watching this transformed man ride up and down the field in his tractor and are now competing to hear themselves over this new aggressive roar of the engine that fills the air they once owned. Cynddylan has no structured rhyme scheme; the voice of the poem is Thomas’ as a narrator to some extent and the general tone of the poem is quite negative from start to finish it consists of a farmer who was once a wise man but is now caught up with modernisation and has turned completely unconventional by the end of the poem.

In Lore, the very title of the poem suggests optimism as ‘Lore’ means wisdom to past down through generation. “Job Davies, eighty five, winters old and still alive after the slow poison and treachery of the seasons” this gives Job the first impression as a tough man who has fought his life through rough and harsh conditions to maintain his years as a farmer without paying any attention to the need for machine in farming. This builds a certain amount of respect to him from the reader. “Miserable?

Kick my arse! ” There is certainly a certain amount of defiance in Job at regarding himself as unfit or overage for the job in this line, with his experience, he’s willing to overcome anything. “It needs more than a rain hearse, wind-drawn, to pull me off the great perch of my laugh” here Thomas inherits a certain amount of light hearted cockiness in the character of Job. He will simply laugh at how nature’s weather conditions fights with him on a daily basis but yet nothing has got the better of him. What’s living but courage? ” Thomas now is the one speaking once again in this stanza and makes Job Courageous for his dedication to his work.

“Paunch full of hot tea, peat-black, dawn found me” Job doesn’t need any luxuries in life; he’ll simply take the basics at the “dawn” of morning and return to the field where he continues the same work as everyday without complaint. Thomas has changed the voice back to Job himself in this stanza. Mowing where the grass grew, Bearded with golden dew. ” Thomas now exemplifies the beauty to nature which makes us realise the reason behind Davies’ choice towards farming. “Rhythm of the long scythe kept this tall frame lithe” Thomas describes how Job conducts the very commonly used “scythe” in farming effortlessly to the extent that it is supple and free moving. “What to do? Stay green. Never mind the machine…. ” Job expresses his thought behind farming in an overall message.

This challenges the opposition poem “Cynddylan” on how to portray farming. “…. whose fuel is human souls. ” Job uses his wisdom in a very dramatising way by saying how the machinery revolution to farming has completely destroyed mans relationship with nature. “Live large, man, and dream small” Thomas here has used ‘Paradox’ whereby he contradicts himself after Job has expressed his philosophy. Lore has a typical rhyme scheme of AABC for stanza’s 1, 2, 4 and 5, on stanza 3 the rhyme scheme is AABB.

The voice of the poem swaps every stanza between Thomas and Job, the poems character. The tone of the poem is a much happier and laughable poem compared to Cynddylan. It is more positive and has a better respected character in it compared to Cynddylan. Thomas created the two characters himself, exploring the approaches to farming, he has made it quite obvious that Job Davies has come out the better man for the route he choose to go by farming.

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Cynddylan Poem and Lore Analysis. (2019, Dec 06). Retrieved from

Cynddylan Poem and Lore Analysis
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