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POETRY

RobertBurnsRobert Burns was a poet and a lyricist. He is widely regarded as the national poet of Scotland, and is celebrated worldwide. He is the best-known of the poets who have written in the Scots language, although much of his writing is also in English and a 'light' Scots dialect which would have been accessible to a wider audience than simply Scottish people. At various times in his career, he wrote in English, and in these pieces, his political or civil commentary is often at its most blunt.

Burns also collected folk songs from across Scotland, often revising or adapting them. His poem (and song) "Auld Lang Syne" is often sung at Hogmanay (New Year), and "Scots Wha Hae" served for a long time as an unofficial national anthem of the country. Other poems and songs of Burns that remain well-known across the world today, include "A Red, Red Rose", "A Man's A Man for A' That", "To a Louse" and "To a Mouse".

Examples of his work include:

John MacLean, Gaelic poet, was born at Caolas, Tiree, Inner Hebrides, 08 January 1787. He married Isobel Black on 19 July 1808 and came to Nova Scotia in 1819, settling in the Barney's River area. He and Isobel had six children. He died on 26 January 1848, and was laid to rest in Glenbard Cemetery, Antigonish County. He wrote this poem while he was enduring the hardships of pioneer life and his longing for his own lands far across the sea. Strangely when “The Bard” was invited back to Scotland and to Coll, he refused to go. It is long, but tells the tale of hardship. In fact, many Highlanders found it hard to get accustomed to the deep forested areas of Nova Scotia. We are thankful the Mi'kmaq came to their aid and taught them how to survive in the harsh winters we had in those days. They also taught them how to draw the maple syrup from the trees in the spring and boil it down to be used as a sweetener.

An example of his work is:

Alexander Stewart was a shoemaker who lived all his working life at Woodend in Glenlyon. He was intensely interested and knowledgeable concerning the history of the people of the area and in addition was a Gaelic scholar of some distinction. In 1928 he published ‘A Highland Parish’ which is a history of Fortingall, Glenlyon and Rannoch. Not only is it a history but it also details traditions, myths and old customs of the area which might otherwise have been completely lost. His daughter Alexandra Stewart wrote 'Daughters of the Glen'.

An example of his work is: