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Poems and Reminiscences.
On the 7th January, 1888, a young Shetlander, resident in Edinburgh, died of tuberculosis at the age of 26.
Behind him he left an extraordinary legacy - a notebook filled with poems, of which only a few had been published. Many were in English and Scots, and these unveiled his profound talent. But there was also a set of poems in Shetland's own dialect, which proved a revelation. Rarely, if ever, had the language been used in print with such surety, strength and joy.
Famed Shetland novelist and poet Jessie Saxby was asked by Anderson's family to edit his works for publication, and the result was one of the key books in the history of Shetland's literature. Broken Lights collected not only 58 of Basil Ramsay Anderson's poetical works, but also included extracts from his personal letters, tributes from family, friends and literary associates, and a glossary of Shetland terms which was among the first of its kind. It is reprinted here in its entirety.
Basil Ramsay Anderson
Edited by Jessie E Saxby