It is one of my favourite songs from Celtic band Runrig. The story is a universal one, as the elements of land and sea are pivotal for the survival of maritime civilizations. Probably of all kind of Civilization. It is the struggle of our Mother Earth subjected by greedy choices of few to all sort of damages and crimes.
The title is a made up word, from the Latin, meaning 'for the land.' It was taken from the motto on the Macdonald Clan crest - Per Mare, Per Terras - By Sea, By Land. The crest shows a severed arm holding a cross. The legend or myth of the crest origin became the subject of the song. In the story, two sons of the chief were given the opportunity to become his heir, and to take the title of Lord of the Isles. The Isles being virgin territory that would be claimed, to become the start of a new clan dynasty. The decision rested on a rowing race between the two sons and their respective oarsmen. The victor would be the one to first touch the new land. The galleys rowed neck and neck until close to the shore, when one brother drew ahead and was about to claim his prize. Before he touched the land, the other brother, seeing the race slip away from him, drew his sword, severed off his own arm and threw it onto the land first. He then became the eventual victor.
This legend within the album is a piece of symbolism for the importance and the struggle that the Celtic peoples have experienced from the dawn of history to the present day for the ownership of, and their survival on the land on which they live.
As I was saying the story in my view is universal and is the struggle we are facing every day no matter if are earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes, tsunamis, typhoons, cyclones, mudslides, and other natural disasters after such tragedies we tend to ask ourselves "This is such a tragedy... God doesn't exist...". Of course some good-doer, no matter from which side will promptly come up with something made up claiming that not only does God exist, but he is trying to show us something through these natural disasters. In reality God on Friday 11th was too busy doing something else and had no time to look down to the poor people of Japan!