Cymru, Obsession and Dusty Old Books

Several years ago, while I was a student at UCLA, I pulled an old Welsh/English dictionary off the shelf in the University Research Library. On the flyleaf of the dictionary was written two names (a man's and a woman's) in two different hands, with a date in 1826, and the line "Arnyd yw Ewyll hyd yw."

Using the dictionary, I translated the line word by word, a notoriously risky prospect. "Arnyd" was translated as "will" or "determination"; I chose "passion" in the sense of the driving force in one's life.

To a certain extent, I have taken the line as a credo. Having something to love and be passionate about fuels my desire to live. In a mundane sense, it is something to get up for in the morning, something to look forward to, something that you love that helps define you. Loving something enough to make it a driving passion in your life gives you the strength to get through days when perhaps you don't have the opportunity to practice that passion. As such, this line is perfectly appropriate on a page for one of my driving passions: my writing.

I've been told that there is a better translation of the line; however, one that was actually sent to me was incomprehensible in English. If you know where this line came from (poetry, old Welsh saying, etc.) please e-mail me and let me know!

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