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ROBBIE BURNS poetry discussion Feb 10th

ROBBIE BURNS poetry discussion - "Tam O'Shanter"




FREE session FMI reading Room Friday 10th Feb 1pm. Bookings not required.


Robbie Burns is a Scottish poet of the 18th century. He wrote numerous poems during his short life. Living from 1759 to 1796 he spent much of his life in Ayrshire, dying in Dumfries where he is interred. Burns work from the18th Century is still resonating today. The use of 'Auld lang Syne' for example.


His works range from 'Scots Wha Hae', a de facto anthem of his people, to 'To a Mouse' which contains one of my favourite lines ‘the best laid schemes of mice and men aft gang agley” or ones plans often go wrong to translate into plain English.


Some of Burns life is know to posterity via an autobiographical letter he wrote. His father was a struggling farmer but by circumstance Burns received a surprisingly good education. His hero were Hannibal and Wallace and though educated was as he says influenced through the supernatural tales of his mothers maid. He spurned to some degree the religious influences he was exposed to. And his spending time on a smuggling shore and his dissipation led him to have a down to earth take on others. His struggles to farm and run a business which failed, and his father ongoing legal dispute also influenced the man. The line ‘rapacious hellhounds that growl in the kennel of justice’ indicate his experience of the system at the time. His womanising was feature of his life and interpersonal crisis led him in desperation to consider a position overseas. Immediately prior to him taking up role overseas his works were published, and he moved to Edinburgh to become solvent financial and feted amongst elements of elite society.

His body of work is too much for one workshop. His classic 'Tam o Shanter' at 200 odd stanzas is what we will focus on.

(Big thanks to Neil - FMI Committee)

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