Under Milk Wood ( cont 4)

[A choir of children’s voices suddenly cries out on one,

high, glad, long, sighing note


First voice

And in Willy Nilly the Postman’s dark and sizzling damp tea-coated misty pygmy kitchen where the spittingcat kettles throb and hop on the range, Mrs Willy Nilly steams open Mr Mog Edwards’ letter to Miss Myfanwy Price and reads it aloud to Willy Nilly by the squint of the Spring sun through the one sealed window running with tears, while the drugged, bedraggled hens at the back door whimper and snivel for the lickerish bog-black tea.


Mrs Willy Nilly

From Manchester House, Llaregyb. Sole Prop: Mr Mog Edwards (late of Twll), Linendraper, Haberdasher, Master Tailor, Costumier. For West End Negligee, Lingerie, Teagowns, Evening Dress, Trousseaux, Layettes. Also Ready to Wear for All Occasions. Economical Outfitting for Agricultural Employment Our Speciality, Wardrobes Bought. Among Our Satisfied Customers Ministers of Religion and J .P ‘s. Fittings by Appointment. Advertising Weekly in the Twll Bugle. Beloved Myfanwy Price my Bride in Heaven,


Mog Edwards

I love you until Death do us part and then we shall be together for ever and ever. A new parcel of ribbons has come from Carmarthen today, all the colours in the rainbow. I wish I could tie a ribbon in your hair a white one but it cannot be. I dreamed last night you were all dripping wet and you sat on my lap as the Reverend Jenkins went down the street. I see you got a mermaid in your lap he said and he lifted his hat. He is a proper Christian. Not like Cherry Owen who said you should have thrown her back he said. Business is very poorly. Polly Garter bought two garters with roses but she never got stockings so what is the use I say. Mr Waldo tried to sell me a woman’s nightie outsize he said he found it and we know where. I sold a packet of pins to Tom the Sailors to pick his teeth. If this goes on I shall be in the workhouse. My heart is in your bosom and yours is in mine. God be with you always Myfanwy Price and keep you lovely for me in His Heavenly Mansion. I must stop now and remain, Your Eternal, Mog Edwards.


Mrs Willy Nilly

And then a little message with a rubber stamp. Shop at Mog’s!!!


First voice.


And Willy Nilly, rumbling, jockeys out again to the three-seated shack called the House of Commons in the back where the hens weep, and sees, in sudden Springshine,


Second voice

herring gulls heckling down to the harbour where the fishermen spit and prop the morning up and eye the fishy sea smooth to the sea’s end as it lulls in blue. Green and gold money, tobacco, tinned salmon, hats with feathers, pots of fish-paste, warmth for the winter-to-be, weave and leap in it rich and slippery in the flash and shapes of fishes through the cold sea-streets. But with blue lazy eyes the fishermen gaze at that milkmaid whispering water with no nick or ripple as though it blew great guns and serpents and typhooned the town.



Too rough for fishing today.


Second voice

And they thank God, and gob at a gull for luck, and moss-slow and silent make their way uphill, from the still still sea, towards the Sailors Arms as the children


[School bell


First voice

spank and scamper rough and singing out of school into the draggletail yard. And Captain Cat at his window says soft to himself the words of their song.


Captain Cat [To the beat of the singing]


Johnnie Crack and Flossie Snail

Kept their baby in a

milking pail Flossie

Snail and Johnnie Crack

One would pull it out and one would put it back


O it’s my turn now said Flossie Snail

To take the baby from the milking pail

And it’s my turn now said Johnnie Crack

To smack it on the head and put it back


Johnnie Crack and Flossie Snail

Kept their baby in a milking pail

One would put it back and one would pull it out

And all it had to drink was ale and stout

For Johnnie Crack and Flossie Snail

Always used to say that stout and ale

Was good for a baby in a milking pail.


[Long pause


First voice

The music of the spheres is heard distinctly over Milk Wood. It is ‘The Rustle of Spring.’


Second voice

A glee-party sings in Bethesda Graveyard, gay but muffled.


First voice

Vegetables make love above the tenors


Second voice

and dogs bark blue in the face.


First voice

Mrs Ogmore–Pritchard belches in a teeny hanky and chases the sunlight with a flywhisk, but even she cannot drive out the Spring: from one of the finger-bowls a primrose grows.


Second voice

Mrs Dai Bread One and Mrs Dai Bread Two are sitting outside their house in Donkey Lane, one darkly one plumply blooming in the quick, dewy sun. Mrs Dai Bread Two is looking into a crystal ball which she holds in the lap of her dirty yellow petticoat, hard against her hard dark thighs.


Mrs Dai Bread Two

Cross my palm with silver. Out of our housekeeping money. Aah!


Mrs Dai Bread One

What d’you see, lovie?


Mrs Dai Bread Two

I see a featherbed. With three pillows on it. And a text above the bed. I can’t read what it says, there’s great clouds blowing. Now they have blown away. God is Love, the text says.


Mrs Dai Bread One [Delighted]


That’s our bed.


Mrs Dai Bread Two

And now it’s vanished. The sun’s spinning like a top. Who’s this coming out of the sun? It’s a hairy little man with big pink lips. He got a wall eye.


Mrs Dai Bread One

It’s Dai, it’s Dai Bread!


Mrs Dai Bread Two

Ssh! The featherbed’s floating back. The little man’s taking his boots off. He’s pulling his shirt over his head. He’s beating his chest with his fists. I le’s climbing into bed.


Mrs Dai Bread One

Go on, go on.


Mrs Dai Bread Two

There’s two women in bed. He looks at them both, with his head cocked on one side. He’s whistling through his teeth. Now he grips his little arms round one of the women.


Mrs Dai Bread One

Which one, which one?


Mrs Dai Bread Two

I can’t see any more. There’s great clouds blowing again.


Mrs Dai Bread One

Ach, the mean old clouds!


[Pause. The children’s singing fades


First voice

The morning is all singing. The Reverend Eli Jenkins, busy on his morning calls, stops outside the Welfare Hall to hear Polly Garter as she scrubs the floors for the Mothers’ Union Dance to-night.


Polly Garter [Singing]


I loved a man whose name was Tom

He was strong as a bear and two yards long

I loved a man whose name was Dick

He was big as a barrel and three feet thick

And I loved a man whose name was Harry

Six feet tall and sweet as a cherry

But the one I loved best awake or asleep

Was little Willy Wee and he’s six feet deep.


O Tom Dick and Harry were three fine men

And I’ll never have such loving again

But little Willy Wee who took me on his knee

Little Willy Wee was the man for me.


Now men from every parish round

Run after me and roll me on the ground

But whenever I love another man back

Johnnie from the Hill or Sailing Jack

I always think as they do what they please

Of Tom Dick and Harry who were tall as trees

And most I think when I’m by their side

Of little Willy Wee who downed and died.


O Tom Dick and Harry were three fine men

And I’ll never have such loving again

But little Willy Wee who took me on his knee

Little Willy Weazel is, the man for me.


Rev. Eli Jenkins

Praise the Lord! We are a musical nation.


Second voice

And the Reverend Jenkins hurries on through the town to visit the sick with jelly and poems.


First voice

The town’s as full as a lovebird’s egg.


Mr Waldo

There goes the Reverend,

Estás leyendo en Ablik