r2vyln3rdioj14u-rld0ska where mountains meet the sea: Rud a Thachair

Rud a Thachair

B’ e madainn a bh’ ann mar mhadainn sam bith eile;
dh’èirich mi, chuir mi umam, rinn mi cupa cofaidh;
thug mi sùil air an t-sìde—latha tioram eile—agus chuir mi
air an rèidio.

Bha an tè às an Eilean Dubh, aig a bheil an cù, Dileas, a’
bruidhinn;
rud aotrom airson cridhe a chumail ruinn air madainn
gheamhraidh;
còmhradh is plòigh, ’s dòcha òran no dhà, corra bhioradh
beag.

Bha na cèisean bho Morning Star ’nan laighe air an t-
sèithear.
Thog mi tè gun smaoineachadh, tè sam bith, a’ chiad tè
bhon chàrn
agus thòisich mi a’ leughadh About nothing in particular
le Thomas A. Clark.

B’ ann mu dheidhinn neoni a bha na dàin to make a short
song
out of nothing agus a-rithist the thistle and the gorse
the kiss, the blessing, the curse

are built on nothing, agus bha Mòrag à Uibhist ’s às an
Eilean Dubh
a’ bruidhinn ri boireannach à Tiriodh, agus b’ e Nonnie a
bh’ oirre
agus bha i ag ràdh a h-ainm mar gun canadh tu ‘neoni’

agus dh’fhairich mi gaoir beag a’ ruighinn mo spioraid,
no co-dhiù am pàirt ud a tha do-ruighinn. Agus airs bith an
e gòraich
no sàr-ghliocas gun ainm a bh’ ann

dh’fhairich mi gun robh e air leth neònach, Nonnie agus
‘neoni’
a’ coinneachadh mar siud anns an fhalamhachd
agus ag èirigh gu chèile às an t-sruth do-sheachanta.

Maoilios Caimbeul, from Dreuchd An Fhigheadair/The Weaver's Task: a Gaelic Sampler (ed by Crìsdean MhicGhilleBhàin)


As It Happens

As it happens,
it was just another day:
got up, got dressed, had a cup

of coffee; looked at the Ceefax
weather: just another day
of little rain. Switched on

the radio: that up-beat
woman from the Black Isle,
the one with the dog called Faithful, was in full flow:

conversation, humour,
easy listening. The mail from Morning Star
was on the chair,

and, not really thinking,
I picked up the first of the pile
and started to read:

it was something by Thomas A. Clark,
poems that spoke about
nothing ‘to make a short song

of nothing’ and then again
‘the thistle and the gorse,
the kiss,

the blessing and the curse, are built
on nothing’; and Morag, from Uist,
was meeting a woman called Nonnie,

who hailed from Tiree,
a woman who said her name like the word
neoni, the word

for nothing, so I felt a wavering cry
from somewhere in my soul, or if not that,
from somewhere in myself that felt

unreachable:
thinking it might be genius, or else
stupidity, hearing that name

and failing to find it strange: neoni,
Nonnie; something and nothing
meeting in a sound

and rising up
as one, to voice
continuum.

(translated John Burnside)

Myles Campbell, from Dreuchd An Fhigheadair/The Weaver's Task: a Gaelic Sampler (ed by Christopher Whyte)

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