Leaving Edinburgh – lyrics and translation

This song was written and sung in Gaelic by our volunteer Adam Dahmer as part of our digital Lughnasadh celebrations. View the full festival here.

Soraidh mhòr le lios is sgòrr
Am bail’ an òir, Dhùn Èideann
Far am bi na companaich
A bhios nam chridh’ ‘s gam chreidsinn

Cho math ‘s a bha, air feasgar tràth,
‘S a’ ghrian bhlàth sna speuran
Air àrd nan sàighd’, ri taobh mo ghràidh
Bhith ‘g eisteachd ris an fhueran

Bu mhath leam bhith
A’ siùbhail-sìth
Mar phrionns, no Rìgh, gun moille
Fo sgàil nan craobh, an àite naobh
‘S an oidhch’ rim thaobh sa choille

Air Cnoch Atha Dhuibh,
Cho ruadh an fhraoich,
Mun cuairt ri lag an teine
Gun aodach air a’ chuirp seach speur
‘S mo ghuth mun ear a’ bheinne

Nam biodh ann tagh, dh’fhaicinn a’ chladh
Air magh nam manach liath
Ri gàisgich, làn, mar Dhonnchadh Bàn
‘S a phìob, a ràn, nis fiath

Bu toil leam lag taobh Ach an t-sagairt;
Bhithinn far an iarrainn
A’ ruith cho saor ri dàmh air ladhar
Air druim a’ sheann-rathad-iarainn

Soraidh slàn, a bhruadair bhàin
Cho beart an dàn is òran
Far ‘n tug mi làr gu tric sa bhar
Air ceòl ghiotair no bhodhrain

Le ghaoth nam aghaidh, air bharr a’ bhràigh,
Os cionn an traigh Port Àlainn
Choisichinn, ‘g òl fion binn,
A’ bruidhinn ri mo chàirdean

Bidh fir is mrathan sna Mhiodaran
Oir tha iad làn ri maise
Is bhithamaid ann, a’ gabhail rann
‘S ag ithe tiops is caise

Nach robh e math, latha Dòmhnaich tràth
Bhith g’ èist ri tàth ‘n Ghuith Chaluim
Ga leantainn, teann;  ‘s cha b’ e rud gann
A thug mi fhin na sailm

Farewell to garden and peak
In the golden city, Edinburgh
Where will be the friends
Who love and believe in me

So good it was, on an early afternoon
With the warm sun in the sky
On Arthur’s seat, beside my love,
To listen to the wood-doves

It would be good to be
Swift-moving
Like a prince or a king, without delay
Beneath the trees in a holy place
With the night at my side in the forest

On Blackford Hill,
So red of heather,
Around the hollow of the fire
Without clothes on the body except (the) sky
And my voice about the east of the mountain

If there were a choice, I’d see the grounds
On the plain of the gray monks
Of heroes full, like Blond Duncan
His pipe, that roared, now calm

It would be pleasant to me,
Prestonfield hollow
I’d be where I wanted
Running free as a deer on hoof
On the back of the old railway

Farewell, pale dream,
So rich in poem and song
Where often I took the floor in the bar
To the music of the guitar or the drum

With wind on my face, atop the ridge
Above Portobello beach
I would walk drinking sweet wine
Speaking to my friends

People tend to be on the Meadows
Because they are full of beauty
We’d be there, giving verse,
And eating chips and cheese

Wasn’t it good on an early Sunday
To be listening to the strength of the voice of Calum
Following him, close, and it wasn’t a rare thing
That I myself would sing the psalms 

Featured image by Scott Miller for Beltane Fire Society. All rights reserved.

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