He was born in Staffin, served with the Merchant Navy and then studied Celtic and History at the University of Edinburgh, graduating in 1976. He has taught Gaelic in schools in Gairloch and his native Skye, and published seven novels for young people in Gaelic as well as a novel for adults, Teas (Clàr/Ùr-sgeul, 2010). He has published eight collections of poetry, including a selected poems 1974 – 2006, Breac-a’-Mhuiltein (Coiscéim, 2007) in Scottish Gaelic with Gaeilge linear translations. Recent poetry collections include Saoghal ur (Diehard, 2003) and, among other collaborations with writers and artists, The two sides of the pass /Dà thaobh a’ bhealaich, with Mark Goodwin (Two Ravens, 2009). The poem sequence ‘Tìr a’ Gheallaidh’ was published in his autobiographical Island Conversion: The Transition of a Gaelic Poet from Sceptic to Believer, co-authored with Margaret Campbell (Islands Book Trust, 2011); his lifelong interest in religion and the interface between science / philosophy and religion has intensified with his recent conversion to Christianity. Awards include Gaelic Books Council awards for early collections, prizes in poetry competitions in Scotland and Ireland, and the An Comunn Gàidhealach National Mod Bardic Crown in 2002. He has been Honorary Bard of Comunn Gàidhlig Inbhir Nis / Gaelic Society of Inverness since 2012.