"Wall of my boyhood, Moel Drigarn, Carn Gyfrwy, Tal Mynydd,
In my mind’s independence ever at my back"

Waldo Williams

Waldo Williams

1904 – 1971

Waldo Goronwy Williams is regarded as a mythical figure. No one who knew him bore a grudge towards him. Whoever spent time in his company would embrace him and treasure every meeting. Young children were always fond of him when he taught them.

Some would insist that he possessed the attributes of a saint. Indeed, he had strong convictions and an impish humour. Someone once said it had taken two thousand years of Welsh civilization to create a man such as Waldo. He had immersed himself in the history of his nation. On one occasion he stood as a Plaid Cymru parliamentary candidate.

Although he lost his deposit he won many admirers. To many Waldo was the greatest Welsh poet of the twentieth century. To others he was a pacifist who happened to be a poet. He was much admired for his insistence on serving two prison sentences for his refusal to pay income tax in protest against war and compulsory military service.

In his mid-fifties he joined the Quakers. He relished the inner stillness he would experience in the Meeting House. He dedicated his only volume of poetry Dail Pren (Tree Leaves) as a source of healing for his nation. We do not know of any other poet who made a similar gesture to his nation.

Upcoming Events

2019 Annual Lecture

2019 Annual Lecture

The Annual Cymdeithas Waldo Lecture in 2019 will be held at St Davids on Friday, September 29 and will commemorate 60 years since Waldo stood in a general election as Plaid Cymru’s first ever candidate in Pembrokeshire.

The lecturer will be Emyr LRead More….

Recent Events

Rev Guto Prys ap Gwynfor Lecture 2018

Rev Guto Prys ap Gwynfor Lecture 2018

A profound and comprehensive lecture was delivered by Guto Prys ap Gwynfor at Millin Chapel, near Haverfordwest, on Friday, September 28 placing Waldo very much in the pantheon of history’s rightful nonconformists. He listed him in the tradition of tRead More….
Lecture by Robert Rhys 2017

Lecture by Robert Rhys 2017

Re-building the House
Dr Robert Rhys based his lecture at Capel Hermon, Fishguard, on September 29 2017, to a large extent, on the majestic ode of praise delivered by Waldo on the occasion of honouring D. J. Williams by Plaid Cymru in the same town Read More….
Lecture by Ieuan Wyn 2016

Lecture by Ieuan Wyn 2016

The poems of Waldo Williams are full of eternal hope of a better world. That was the gist of National bard, Ieuan Wyn’s lecture as he delivered the seventh Annual Cymdeithas Waldo Lecture at Llangernyw, near Llanrwst, on the actual date of Waldo’s biRead More….
Lecture by Professor M. Wynn Thomas 2016

Lecture by Professor M. Wynn Thomas 2016

In a lecture delivered in  the village of Rhoscrowther, near Pembroke on 26 May 2016,  Professor M. Wynn Thomas – for the first time in the public arena – dealt with the effect of the anxiety that Waldo Williams suffered as a result of his father’s lRead More….
Jason Walford Davies Lecture 2015

Jason Walford Davies Lecture 2015

The Annual Waldo Williams Lecture is by now a literary event of merit. The Waldo Williams Society was only formed five years ago. The committee meetings are held in Mynachlog-ddu, Pembrokeshire. But it is truly a national organisation attracting the Read More….