Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Gaelic is the Loving Tongue

I'm breaking my self-imposed rule, as there is no music video connected with this one - yet - but I found the story so fascinating that I decided to post it anyway. And it looks like it would be perfect for my colleague, Kerry's, plate.

via Northings - the Highlands and Islands Art Journal - comes this fascinating, if occasionally dense, article by Rody Gorman, a Skye-based Gaelic translator and poet. Unfortunately, the main body of the article is in PDF format, which requires you to use Acrobat Reader to open. I hope Rody or someone eventually puts this into HTML. I volunteer to do it gratis if you're reading this, Rody.

Inspired by Roddy Woomble's Ballads Of The Book project melding the talents of the contemporary Scottish writing and music communities, Woomble and Gorman are working on a spin-off to produce a CD of Bob Dylan songs translated and sung in Gaelic. Here's an excerpt of Gorman's translation of Dylan's Buckets of Rain.

Sileadh (Buckets of Rain)

Sileadh gun euradh, sileadh nan deur,
Cur thairis le sileadh, mo thruaighe gheur,
Sileadh on ghealaich na mo chròg.
Bheir mi dhut gaol gu sìorraidh, mo rùn geal òg.

- Translation © Rody Gorman, 2007

Even though I know more Yiddish than Gaelic, I can hear those words singing in my head.

Well worth the hassle of loading the PDF file and dealing with the article's occasional academic rat-hole digression, Gorman explores and translates Dylan songs including Knockin' On Heaven's Door, and It Takes a Lot to Laugh, It Takes a Train to Cry, and a few older songs where Dylan's music has its roots, such as Corrina, Corrina.

It's hard to tell from the article how close Gorman is to making the CD reality. Have any takers, Kerry?

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