Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Sorley Maclean

I've just posted a Sorley Maclean poem below. He wrote in Gaelic, though translated his own work into English. He is a superb poet, of nature and of human nature, and much under-rated, I believe, because his principal language was the Gaelic.

I believe I may have met Sorley Maclean, many many years ago. His brother John was my headmaster at school, and my mother was also their cleaner at home. During school holidays, when there were no playgroups or the like and in any case my mother would have been too poor to send me, I used to have to go along with her while she cleaned.

One time, there was a strange old man, who my mother said was Mr Maclean's brother. Now, there was more than one brother, I know, but I believe the other died quite young, so I feel sure it was Sorley I met. It is strange to think that I was in the company of a famous man, one who I now think may be the greatest British poet of the last century, and yet I really know nothing at all about it. It's just a vague memory, and I would dearly love to be able to make it clearer.

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