2007 - 2021

Mùirn Mhurchaidh

13709891_1576647279307433_1112022726367085111_nNuair a chuala Mairead NicLeòid guth Mhurchaidh MhicPhàrlain airson a’ chiad uair, cha robh dòigh fios a bhith aice air a’ bhuaidh a bheireadh esan air a beatha-se (agus a’ bhuaidh a bhiodh aicese airsan). Thachair seo aig pàrtaidh ann am flat air sràid Belmont an Glaschu san t-Samhain an 1970. Mar a tha Catriona Mhoireach ga innse:

“Fhad ’s a bha am pàrtaidh is an cabadaich a’ dol mun cuairt oirre shuidh i ann an oisean ag èisteachd ri guth a’ bhodaich agus ris na h-òrain a bha e a’ seinn – òrain agus fuinn a bha ùr dhi. Bha i air a beò-ghlacadh!”

Ann am beachd Maireid fhèin, mur a b’ e an oidhche sin is dòcha nach robh na h-Òganaich air a bhith ann idir. Agus mur a b’ e na h-Òganaich, cha bhiodh ainm Mhurchaidh MhicPhàrlain cho aithnichte an diugh is a tha e. Faodaidh sinn uile a bhith taingeil airson na thachair an oidhche sin.

’S ann stèidhichte air a’ chàirdeas eadar Murchadh agus Mairead a tha an leabhar ùr Le Mùirn, agus taisbeanadh ceangailte ris, a chaidh a chur air bhog oidhche Haoine mar phàirt de dh’fhèis Bhaile nam Marsantan an Glaschu. Bha na bha an làthair aig an tachartas (còrr is ceud) na chomharra air a’ mheas a th’ air Bàrd Mhealboist fhathast an-diugh, agus, gu dearbh, air Mairead na h-Òganaich. Tha e duilich smaoineachadh air mòran bhàird eile a tharraingeadh uibhir de shluagh barrachd air deich air fhichead bliadhna as dèidh am bàs.

’S e bàrd a chaidh thar nan ginealaichean a bh’ ann am Murchadh MacPhàrlain. Thèid seo fhaicinn nam theaghlach fhèin. Dha mo sheanmhair ann am Pabail Uarach, bha i eòlach air mar bhàrd baile Mhealboist (agus b’ ann bhuaithe a thàinig an cù a bh’ aig an teaghlach sna caogadan). Chuala mo phàrantan guth Mhurchaidh airson a’ chiad uair air clàradh ann an taigh a caraidean Fionnlagh agus Norma an Obair Dheathan anns na seasgadan. Chuir iad eòlas air an uairsin nuair a ghluais iad air ais a Leòdhas, is iad an sàs còmhla anns a’ phàrtaidh Làbarach agus an iomairt Nato a chumail a-mach às an eilean. Ach cuideachd dhan ghinealach acasan, bidh Murchadh a-chaoidh ceangailte ri sgeul na h-Òganaich agus a’ bhuaidh a bh’ aca air saoghal ciùil na Gàidhlig anns na seachdadan. Agus dhomh fhìn, ged nach robh mi ach bliadhna a dh’aoise nuair a bhàsaich e an 1982, fhuair mi a’ chiad eòlas – mar a fhuair a h-uile leanabh le Gàidhlig – air obair Mhurchaidh gu math òg a’ seinn ‘Cànan nan Gàidheal’ aig Mòdan agus Fèisean. Sin dìleab a’ bhàird.

Ach ged a tha eòlas fad is farsaing air Murchadh ann an saoghal na Gàidhlig, tha dìth leabhraichean ann mu bheatha agus bhàrdachd agus mar sin tha fàilte mhòr air an fhoillseachadh ùr seo. ’S e leabhar air leth tarraingeach a th’ ann an Le Mùirn, ann an iomadh dòigh. Tha Catriona Mhoireach air sgeulachd a’ chàirdeis eadar Murchadh agus Mairead innse le meas, cùram agus tuigse. Tha i ag innse:

“’S ann a tha an leabharan-sa mu dheidhinn nithean pearsanta, mu dheidhinn dithis àraidh a thàinig còmhla airson ùine glè ghoirid sna seachdadan agus a bhrosnaich mòran againn, tro bhriathran agus tro cheòl agus tro mheadhanan-clàraidh, ùidh a ghabhail nar cànan fhèin.”

Chaidh deilbh ùr a chruthachadh le luchd-ealain dhan phròiseact agus tha iad sin a’ cur an snas fhèin ri dàin Mhurchaidh san leabhar. Chithear eisimpleir cuideachd de dh’obair ealain a’ bhàird fhèin – taobh dheth nach eil idir cho aithnichte an-diugh. Agus aon dha na rudan as tlachdmhoire mun leabhar, ’s e ath-riochdachaidhean nan litreachan a bhiodh Murchadh a’ cur gu Mairead. ’S e cruinneachadh prìseil, fìnealta a th’ ann an seo.

B’ e aon dha na ceistean a chaidh a thogail oidhche Haoine, an e bàrd baile a bu mhotha a bh’ ann am Murchadh no an robh a shealladh nas fharsainge na sin? Agus dh’aontaichinn leis an fhreagairt: gun robh sealladh eadar-nàiseanta aig a’ bhàrd ach chan eil sin a’ ciallachadh nach b’ e bàrd baile a bh’ ann cuideachd.

Tha saothair Mhurchaidh ioma-taobhach. Buinidh e dhan latha anns an robh am bàrd fhèin beò gun teagamh sam bith: linn eilthireachd agus atharrachaidhean sòisealta; linn nan cogaidhean mòra agus na bagairt niùclasaich. Ach tha freumhan domhainn aig bàrdachd Mhurchaidh ann an saoghal eile cuideachd – seann saoghal na Gàidhealtachd agus an traidisean litreachais a bha aig a chridhe, na bàird nan luchd-labhairt air a shon. Agus tron bhàrdachd air fad tha mac-meanmna agus caractar iongantach a’ bhàird a’ ruith – rud nach do bhuin dha càil ach an duine fhèin.

Tha an leabhar agus an taisbeanadh ùr seo na chothrom air leth airson duine sam bith le eòlas air Murchadh MacPhàrlain a chuimhneachadh. Do dhuine sam bith nach eil eòlach air fhathast, seo agaibh àite airson tòiseachadh.

Tha Le Mùirn le Catriona Mhoireach foillsichte le Faram. Tha an taisbeanadh, mar phàirt de dh’fhèis Bhaile nam Marsantan, anns A’ Bhriggait, 151 Bridgegate, Glaschu – fosgailte eadar 11m is 5.30f, 30 Iuchair gu 7 Lùnastal.

Taing dha Aonghas Caimbeul airson cead an deilbh a chleachdadh.

Comments (18)

Join the Discussion

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  1. Shaun Steuart says:

    What could possibly be the point in writing an article in a language the vast majority of us cannot read.

    1. raddledoldtart says:

      I have 4 Gaelic speaking children, they’re interested in the future of Scotland.

    2. Ruairidh Maciver says:

      The Gaelic section on Bella Caledonia is in Gaelic.

  2. K. A. Mylchreest says:

    The article is about a book and exhibition remembering a well-known Gaelic poet who died in 1982. He was especially influential in the 1970´s, a critical period for the survival/revival of the language and the Gaelic speaking communities of Scotland. If you have no Gaelic then it´s difficult to see how this article would be of much interest really.

    Unlike print media etc. there are few overheads involved in publishing on the web, and it matters little whether the article is read by ten people or ten thousand. If you don´t like it simply ignore it. OTOH it does help to foster the awareness that Gaelic is a perfectly normal living language, entirely capable of being the medium for an article such as this. And this in turn may encourage more people to learn and use the language.

    If you´re so opposed to Scottish culture why are you even reading Bella?

  3. Shaun Steuart says:

    K.A. Mylchreest – Thank you for your reply, you make some valid points. Perhaps you misunderstood the intent of my comment, I appreciate that it may have appeared blunt.

    I’m not opposed to Scottish Culture (although I’m sure I could be opposed to Scottish culture and still have reason to read Bella).

    As it happens, I read Bella regularly, which is perhaps why I was so frustrated at not being able to read a recent article.

    From my perspective, the vast majority of people living in Scotland (and presumably the readership of this site) cannot read Gaelic, however, every Gaelic speaker can read English (I’m sure you will correct me if that is technically not quite the case). So, it would seem to me, to make far more practcal sense to write in English, to allow for the widest readership to take home the message. In additon to simply being courteous to write in a language all readers can understand.

    Thank you for explaining its content, I wouldn’t have known that otherwise, and, as it happens, yes, I would have been interested in reading such an article, despite not speaking Gaelic. I’ve been interested to read articles on, for example, the Spanish revolution in the past, although I can’t speak Spanish.

    That said, I do take your points about promoting the language. I also agree with the principle of promoting Gaelic. For me, in this context, it just seems to lack common sense however.

    I’m sure we can agree to disagree.

    1. K. A. Mylchreest says:

      There is no easy answer to this. The linguistic landscape looks entirely different depending on which side of the glen you view it from. To someone such as yourself, the argument that everything should be in English the language we all understand makes perfect practical sense. OTOH seen from the perspective of any minority language community, that same attitude appears unbearably arrogant. Such is the paradox of one-way bilingualism. Answers on a postcard … as they say 🙂

      To be fair to Bella, there are few Gaelic articles here and they largely concern purely Gaelic matters. This though presents its own contradictions. If everything written in Gaelic has to be closely connected to that culture, then the whole thing becomes inward-looking, a sort of self-referential naval-gazing exercise. Hardly the way to promote Gaelic as an all-purpose modern language on a par with e.g. Danish or Dutch, whose speakers btw mostly understand English these days.

      Perhaps the article should have gone elsewhere, e..g the all-Gaelic online journal Dàna :

      http://danamag.org/

      [or at least repeated on Tìr-nam-Blog?]

      but that again would be the Gaels making themselves invisible. Có aig tha fhios gu dé a bhiodh nas fhèarr?

      1. You’re too generous. This is tiresome, petty, bitter, narrow and boring – born of cultural self-loathing

        1. Shaun says:

          K.A.Mylchreest – Thanks for your thoughts there, interesting particularly to read the perspective from a Gaelic speakers point of view and the perception of arrogance. I honestly hadn’t considered that. It genuinely just felt like common sense..that is…from my side of the glen! Indeed, reading the responses to my initial post, I can see how important the issue clearly is to members of the Gaelic community. I can also see that my one line post wasn’t constructive and I should have explained my thoughts behind it from the beginning, for that and any offence it may have caused, I genuinely apologise. I actually wrote it in haste, I logged onto Bella to see what new articles there might be to find another recent article in Gaelic…frustrated at not being able to read it, I put my thought down on comment.

          Bella Editor – I’m sorry you feel that way, but then, I can see that my initial post was insensitive. There is one thing you say which struck a cord. Cultural self-loathing is a bit extreme, but every since I was old enough to be aware of the political situation in Scotland, and that Scot’s actually wanted it that was, combined with the sectarian hatred I’ve seen growing up in the West of Scotland, I can say that I have never felt a particular pride in being Scottish….maybe you’ve got something there.

          Anyway, points all noted and apologies for any offence caused.

    2. seonaidh says:

      Oh dear… you’re basically saying that Gaels shouldn’t communicate unless translation is provided for those who don’t speak the language. Sorry but my tolerance of this bullshit, in 2016, is wearing thin.

      Thall is tarraing.

      1. Shaun says:

        I don’t believe I implied that translation should be provided in every case where Gaels communicate. That would obviously be ridiculous.

        I had said, or been trying to, that it is frustrating to not be able to read all of the articles on Bella. Since all of the readers speak English and the vast majority do not speak Gaelic, it seemed, on the face of it, to make sense to write in English so that everyone could read the articles.

        I have also seen, from the responses, that that point of view is considered to be insensitive and there are obviously very strong feelings about the importance of writing articles in Gaelic. If I wasn’t clear in my response, I’ll try to be again. I completely accept the responses and apologise for any offence I may have caused. I take the point. It is clearly very important for Gaelic speakers to have articles written in Gaelic rather than English. I’m sure I can handle not being able to read a small amount of the site content.

        1. K. A. Mylchreest says:

          There´s really no need for any further apology on your part Shaun since it´s clear to me at least that you weren´t commenting out of spite but were genuinely puzzled by the presence of Gàidhlig content here. And as they say ¨weel ye ken noo¨ 🙂

          In a way the fault is in part due to the Gaels tendency to make themselves invisible so that people like yourself who are ¨out of the loop¨ may have little or no awareness of the presence and significance of the language. A small but obvious example of this ´invisibility´ is exemplified by the way the author of book this article is all about, a lady known to the world at large as ¨Margaret MacLeod¨ becomes in a Gaelic context ¨Mairead NicLeòid¨ and so on with almost all personal names. A strange almost schizophrenic existence between two worlds?

          As a slight digression, it´s easy to see how adopting camouflage is/was an understandable defense against unending ridicule. The Welsh are far more up-front about their language and identity, and suffer just such mockery as a result. Here for example someone has taken it upon himself to re-tweet anti-Welsh language tweets, simply to demonstrate how inane and unimaginative they are. The stream seems endless and unremitting, why do English speakers so hate and despise anything they can´t understand? How insecure they must feel.

          https://twitter.com/TakeThatWelsh

          On a more positive note here´s some background to the author etc. (in English!) which largely overlaps the Gaelic article above :

          https://projects.handsupfortrad.scot/hall-of-fame/na-hoganaich/

          As chance would have it I was living near to Stirling/Sruibhle in 1971 and when the Mòd came to town I went along to several events and was present when Na h-Òganaich made their debut. The Mòd was very Victorian in ethos back then (maybe still is?) so they came in with something of a bang with ´Mòrag´ (something like the later recording on this page, RHS, Éist, first black box :
          http://www.bbc.co.uk/alba/oran/orain/mhorag_leat_shiubhlainn/)
          followed by Òran Cladaich with its memorable refrain. At the time the overlap between the Folk Scene and the Gàidhlig World was non-existent so whoever thought to hold a folk group´s competition must have been very forward thinking. There was really no competition, the other contestants were mostly along the lines of ¨three or four lassies out of a Gaelic choir with a guitar or two thrown in¨ as someone put it. When some years later the Mód returned to Stirling, Runrig played their ¨Mod for Rockers¨ concert (search YouTube), the world had moved on some. But just maybe Na h-Òganaich were the seed of it all?

          For those with the Gaelic, a bio and links to the full words and recordings of all many of their songs, including perhaps half-a-dozen by Murdo MacFarlane are to be found here (with links) :
          http://www.bbc.co.uk/alba/oran/people/mairead_agus_donaidh_macleoid/

  4. Shaun Steuart says:

    Raddleoldtart – I’m delighted that you have 4 Gaelic speaking children that are interested in the future of Scotland. I can’t quite follow the relevance that statement has to the point I made.

    1. raddledoldtart says:

      They expect to see the language they speak and write on a daily basis, on a site as wide ranging and well read as Bella Caledonia.

  5. Tulloch Gorum says:

    There should be no apologies needed for writing in Gaelic. Gaelic speakers have to accommodate English monoglots constantly (how many “Gaelic” events and materials are actually bilingual? An “inclusiveness” that only ever goes in one direction) everywhere else, there’s no reason for that to be the case here as well.

    Cò-dhiù, a Ruaraidh – tapadh leat airson an alt inntinneach seo. Chòrd seo rium gu h-àraidh:

    “B’ e aon dha na ceistean a chaidh a thogail oidhche Haoine, an e bàrd baile a bu mhotha a bh’ ann am Murchadh no an robh a shealladh nas fharsainge na sin? Agus dh’aontaichinn leis an fhreagairt: gun robh sealladh eadar-nàiseanta aig a’ bhàrd ach chan eil sin a’ ciallachadh nach b’ e bàrd baile a bh’ ann cuideachd.”

    Agus nach eil sin fìor a thaobh iomadach bàird, ceòladairean 7c? Tha sealladh uabhasach fhèin chumhang ann air cultar dùthchasach, gur e cultar Lùb a’ Gheòidh a th’ann, ach tha duine mar Mhurchadh MacPhàrlain (agus Hamish Henderson, agus Màrtainn Bennett, agus Grìogair Labhraidh, agus Niteworks, agus tòrr air barrachd) a’ sealltainn cho breugach ‘s a tha am beachd sin.

  6. Shaun says:

    Tulloch Gorum – Je ne crois pas que j’ai demandé des excuses, ni ne je veux dire qu’il

  7. Daibhidh Buidhe says:

    Deagh aithris a seo.

    Abair aineolas bhuad Shaun Steuart..

  8. seonaidh says:

    Cruinneachadh de dhàin ri fhaotainn an-seo. Chan eil an dàn aig mu ‘Hitlearan Breatannach’ nam measg ge-tà… 🙁
    http://www.gsi.org.uk/news/2015/1/28/murdo-macfarlane-1901-1982-murchadh-macphrlain-brd-mhealboist

  9. Roulette says:

    I love to smell the roses!

Help keep our journalism independent

We don’t take any advertising, we don’t hide behind a pay wall and we don’t keep harassing you for crowd-funding. We’re entirely dependent on our readers to support us.

Subscribe to regular bella in your inbox

Don’t miss a single article. Enter your email address on our subscribe page by clicking the button below. It is completely free and you can easily unsubscribe at any time.