Poetry and Song: Mac Mhaighstir Alasdair
Alasdair MacMhaighstir Alasdair lived and worked in the 18th century, and is widely regarded as one of the finest ever Gaelic poets. He was also first cousin to Flora MacDonald, and directly involved in the events of 1745 and its aftermath. His most famous work was an epic poem which describes a difficult sea voyage from Locheynort in South Uist to Carrickfergus in Ireland. It is entitled, ‘Birlinn Chlann Raghnaill’ (The Birlinn of Clan Ranald), and, this year, it has been given a new and lively translation by Professor Alan Riach, of the department of Scottish Literature in Strathclyde University.
Alan will be coming to South Uist to read from his translation and talk about the description and drama of the poem. Come along and hear him at 7 pm, Tuesday 19th July at Kildonan Museum, where a replica of a birlinn sits outside the museum. Bill Innes will also be taking part, and reading some of the original poem in Gaelic.