Nan robh sinn an Talasgar air an tràigh far a bheil am beul mòr bàn a’ fosgladh eadar dà ghiall chruaidh, Rubha nan Clach `s am Bioda Ruadh, sheasainn-sa ri taobhn na mara ag ùrachadh gaoil ‘nam anam fhad ‘s a bhiodh an cuan a’lìonadh camas Thalasgair gu sìorraidh: sheasainn an siud air lom na tràghad gu `n cromadh Priseal a cheann àigich. Agus nan robh sinn ciudeachd air tràigh Chalgaraidh am Muile, eadar Alba is Tiriodh, eadar an saoghal `s a’bhiothbhuan, dh’fhuirichinn an siud gu luan a’ tomhas gainmhich bruan air bhruan. Agus an Uibhist air tràigh Hòmhstadh fa chomhair farsaingeachd na h-ònrachd, dh’fheithinn-sa an siud gu sìorraidh braon air bhraon an cuan a’ sìoladh. Agus nan robh mi air tràigh Mhùideart còmhla riut, a nodhachd ùidhe, chuirinn suas an co-chur gaoil dhut an cuan ’s a’ ghaineamh, bruan air bhraon dhiubh. ’S nan robh sinn air Mol Steinnseil Stamhain ’s an fhairge neo-aoibhneach a’ tarraing nan ulbhag is gan tilgeil tharainn, thogainn-sa am balla daingeann ro shìorraidheachd choimhich ’s i framhach.
If we were in Talisker on the shore where the great white mouth opens between two hard jaws, Rubha nan Clach and the Bioda Ruadh, I would stand beside the sea renewing love in my spirit while the ocean was filling Talisker bay forever: I would stand there on the bareness of the shore until Prishal bowed his stallion head. And if we were together on Calgary shore in Mull, between Scotland and Tiree, between the world and eternity, I would stay there till doom measuring sand, grain by grain, and in Uist, on the shore of Homhsta in presence of that wide solitude, I would wait there forever for the sea draining drop by drop. And if I were on the shore of Moidart with you, for whom my care is new, I would put up in a synthesis of love for you the ocean and the sand, drop and grain. And if we were on Mol Stenscholl Staffin when the unhappy surging sea dragged the boulders and threw them over us, I would build the rampart wall against an alien eternity grinding (its teeth).
Sorley MacLean's mastery of his chosen medium and his engagement with the European poetic tradition and European politics make him one of the major Scottish poets of the modern era.Read more about this poet