Acair, in collaboration with Comann Eachdraidh Uibhist a Tuath, have announced the publication of a revised new Gaelic edition of ‘Oiteagan à Tìr nan Òg’ by Roderick MacKay, the Baleshare Bard. This book was originally published in 1938, but has been out of print for many years. This poetry collection from North Uist was a favourite of many and there was a lot of enthusiasm, after 80 years, to publish this new edition.
Iain MacDonald, who edited the book, enriched this edition with a history of the people whom the poems are written about, as well as an extended account of the poet himself, along with an account of the initial reactions people had when it was first published. There are a number of poems which did not feature in the original book, which add to the precious body of work which was left behind by Roderick MacKay
This new edition of ‘Oiteagan à Tìr nan Òg’ is sure to stir up memories for those who have previously read some of these poems, but they will also be loved by new readers, and contemporary singers, as they are introduced to the rich heritage of North Uist Gaelic poetry.
Renowned singer Julie Folwis has written a foreword to ‘Oiteagan à Tìr nan Òg’, and states that she remembers hearing these poems in her youth long before she read the book itself, and that this collection had a profound impact on the Gaelic songs she learned as a child, which have remained with her to this day.