All my life I have had great pleasure from reading aloud (or reciting from memory) the glorious lyric poetry of France. I hope that my pupils and friends have enjoyed them with me. Suddenly, seventy years later, I have found a new French lyric poet. He is new to me but much older than the poets of the nineteenth century, and also than the Renaissance poets Ronsard and Du Bellay whom I discovered when I was at Southampton University. This poet was born in 1394 and I feel an empathy with him which refreshes me. My favourite poem is one of the saddest that I've read. We in Wales have a word for exile or loss which is deeply moving for us. It is hiraeth.
Dr Prys Owen was an Education Officer in the Royal Air Force. He taught French in Latymer Upper School, in Regent Street Polytechnic, and King Henry VIII Grammar School, Abergavenny. He trained teachers at the University of Leeds and was Dean of Studies in Trinity College, Carmarthen. As an HMI in Wales he inspected French teaching and was responsible for teacher training.