MacNeil K (2017) Portable Rootedness and Other Contradictions: Some Thoughts on Contemporary Hebridean Poetry. The Bottle Imp, (21), Art. No.: 1. http://asls.arts.gla.ac.uk/SWE/TBI/index.html
First paragraph: If you happen to be visiting Portree, the main settlement on the Isle of Skye, the chances are that you will take a wander down to the bay where in the flurry of tourists and opportunistic seagulls, it is easy to miss a plaque on a white-washed wall with the Gaelic words: 'Moch 's mi 'g èirigh, / air bheagan èislein, /air madainn Chèitein / 's mi ann an Òs' (As I rose early, / with few cares, /on a May morning / in Ose). The plaque marks the house in which the Skye poet, Mary MacPherson, more familiarly known in Gaelic as Màiri Mhòr nan Òran (Big Mary of the Songs), died in 1898 at the age of seventy-seven. The crofting township of Ose mentioned in the lines quoted, is on the west side of the island, on the shores of Loch Bracadale. The topography of this girth of land between Portree and Ose, marked by the prominent rock pinnacle of An Stòr on the east side and the two distinctive flat-topped MacLeod's Tables in the west, is referenced in many of Màiri Mhòr's songs through resonant associations that nourished her sense of place.
hebridean poetry; bardachd; scottish literature; islands
The Bottle Imp, Issue 21