Woods of Drum has been written as part of Hear The Drum, a community music project commissioned by the National Trust for Scotland to engage more people with the work of the trust. In Woods of Drum, Mary Irvine writes a letter to a friend in which she shares her concerns for her brother Alexander, the 17th laird of Drum, who has marched off with Bonnie Prince Charlie's army to fight at Culloden. In the mid-1700s, Mary took over the management of the estate when her brother was fighting the Jacobite cause. She was particularly interested in the management of the woods and is reported to have written: "I lang wish my brother to be at more pains to propagate trees about Drum as I think they might be profitable as well as pretty."
White anenomes spring up between decaying autumn leaves
The sun on tender green leaves
A new beginning.
Alexander fights on Charlie's side.
Days are getting longer
A new Scotland.
See that robin perched on that branch
His song so warm
Red is its breast.
Alexander, are you alive?
Copyright text, words and music Petra Vergunst.