Dylan Thomas was born in Swansea in 1914. After leaving school he worked briefly as a junior reporter on the South Wales Evening Post before deciding to embark on a freelance literary career. He rapidly established himself as a remarkable personality and one of the finest poets of his generation. 18 Poems appeared in 1934, Twenty-five Poems in 1936, Deaths and Entrances in 1946 and In Country Sleep in 1952. His Collected Poems was published in 1952.
Throughout his life Thomas also wrote short stories, his most famous collection being Portrait of the Artist as a Young Dog. He also wrote film scripts, was a celebrated broadcaster of radio features and talks, lectured widely in America, and wrote the radio play Under Milk Wood, first broadcast posthumously in 1954.
The highly successful lecturing tours of America in the early 1950s were made possible by his fame but were also necessary for financial reasons. In 1953, on the fourth of those visits, and shortly after his thirty-ninth birthday, he collapsed and died in New York. His body is buried in Wales at Laugharne, his home for many years. In 1982 a memorial stone was unveiled in ‘Poets’ Corner’ in Westminster Abbey.