In 1939, following her marriage, the poet Lynette Roberts went to live in a small village in Wales. This experience, both enriching and isolating, became the source of some of her extraordinary poetry. Her diary observes daily life in a Welsh village in wartime with a poetic intensity: communal harvest, the arrival of evacuees, a frozen water pump, the cadences of voices and the effects of light and rain. Seven haunting stories weave modernist myths of Wales, while her magazine articles explore Welsh life with an anthropologist's eye.Roberts' restless intelligence never limits itself to the local. She writes about Picasso and Le Corbusier, about a visit to Spain on the trail of Lorca, the solemn drama of afternoon tea with the Sitwells, the comic disaster of taking her young children to visit T.S. Eliot. Enquiring, unsentimental, wryly humorous, Roberts engages us with her speaking voice. The publication of Lynette Roberts' "Collected Poems" in 2006 restored her to her place in twentieth-century poetry. This collection of her prose writings, most published here for the first time, accompanied by evocative family photographs, discloses the world that she transformed into poetry.
Lynette Roberts was born in Buenos Aires of Welsh stock in 1909 and died in West Wales in 1995. She published two collections of poems in her lifetime, both from Faber and Faber: Poems (1944) and Gods with Stainless Ears (subtitled 'A Heroic Poem', 1951). She married the Welsh writer and editor Keidrych Rhys, and came to know some of the prominent writers and artists her day. T.S. Eliot was her publisher and advocate. Roberts helped Robert Graves with his work on The White Goddess, and Dylan Thomas was best man at her wedding. She was a friend of Wyndham Lewis (who painted her), Edith Sitwell (to whom she dedicated Gods with Stainless Ears) and Alun Lewis (for whom she wrote 'Poem from Llanybri'), and published in a variety of magazines in Britain and America.