Friday, January 25, 2013

January 25th: ROBERT BURNS DAY!

We're baaaaack!

And, remarkably, it is another Scottish Holiday today!  Whether you call it "Burns Day", or "Burns Night" or whatever celebrates the life and works of another "Bard."  You thought there was only the one from Avon?  Think again!

"The annual celebratory tribute to the life, works and spirit of the great Scottish poet, Robert Burns (1759-1796). Celebrated on, or about, the Bard's birthday, January 25th, Burns Suppers range from stentoriously formal gatherings of esthetes and scholars to uproariously informal rave-ups of drunkards and louts. Most Burns Suppers fall in the middle of this range, and adhere, more or less, to some sort of time honoured form which includes the eating of a traditional Scottish meal, the drinking of Scotch whisky, and the recitation of works by, about, and in the spirit of the Bard."

To learn more about Scotland's Bard, Click Here

Burns wrote many poems and songs that you may know, not realizing they were written by him or that they were over 200 years old:  "Auld Lang Syne" (sung at New Years) "Sweet Afton" ("Flow gently, sweet Afton...").  Here are two poems by Burns, which does not even come near to the range of his canon. One you may know, and one might be new to you. Enjoy!

A Red, Red Rose by Robert Burns (poem)
The Farewell by Robert Burns (poem)

Recordings (c) 2013 by Judith Cullen
NOT for Commercial Use

NOTE: These poems are read in "translated" versions.  Burns wrote in a number of "dialects" based on spoken Scottish - they range from incomprehensible to the totally understandable to the English/American ear. Reading the translations was safer.  Also A Red, Red Rose contains a gender switch from the original: "lass" to "lad."