Bonhoeffer uses a similar phrase 'worldly Christianity'. It's J Gresham Machen that I want to line up most closely with. See his Christianity and culture here. Having done commentaries on Proverbs (Heavenly Wisdom) and Song of Songs (Heavenly Love), a matching title for Ecclesiastes would be Heavenly Worldliness. For my stance on worldliness, see 3 posts here.

10 Interesting facts about Dylan Thomas

1. Dylan Thomas Welsh. He was born in Swansea in 1914.
2. His middle name was Marlais, which means 'voice of the Sea'. Dyaln also menas something like son of the wave and so both names are apt as the sea was to be a recurring theme throughout much of his work, especially in 'Under Milk Wood'.
3. His father was Senior English Master at Swansea Grammar School.
4. His wife's name was Caitlin Macnamara. Born in Hammersmith, London, in 1913, she was of Irish descent. They married in 1937 and had three children (Llewelyn, Aeronwy and Colum). It was a very stormy relationship. They lived in Laugharne 1938-1940 and New Quay in 1944 and 1945.
5. They were introduced by Welshman Augustus John, who painted Thomas's portrait in  1937 and 1938 (Alfred Janes and Rupert Shephard also produced portraits).
6. He is one of the Beatles' heroes (John's?) on the cover for the Sgt Pepper album, gave Bob Dylan part of his name and has had his poems set to music by Welshman John Cale.
7. His 1940 work 'Portrait of the Artist as a Young Dog' humorously parodies the title of James Joyce's 'A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man' published 24 years earlier.
8. His most celebrated work was 'Under Milk Wood', subtitled a play for voices. It was in fact commissioned as a radio play. It was broadcast in January 1954 (having been previously performed on stage in New York in May 1953).
9. Under Milk Wood was narrated famously by Richard Burton. Sir Anthony Hopkins later did it too. Burton and Hopkins, born 1925 and 1937 respectively, were both from the Port Talbot area of South Wales.
10. Dylan Thomas died in New York in 1953. He was only 39. He was undertaking a lecture tour of the USA at the time. Caitlin arrived at the hospital shortly before his death. She was institutionalised for a while after. His excessive drinking led to pneumonia. (Nick Cave's 2012 song "There She Goes, My Beautiful World" includes the line "Dylan Thomas/he died drunk/in St. Vincent's Hospital".) 


Anonymous said...

It was John's choice. There was a quote at the exhibition from Paul saying 'I don't think John would've started writing if it wasn't for Dylan Thomas'. I think 'I am the Walrus' is very reminiscent of Dyl.

Gary Brady said...

Thanks for confirming; I missed that quote. We went to Macarthur Glen today and I bought a Dylan Thomas omnibus (as did Dylan - our Dylan I mean). I re-read his holiday memories and read his Festival of Britain 1951. The former really moved me and made me wish I could do something approaching it. I wrote down 10 literary devices he likes to use in the back of the book. I might blog it one day.