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Light as Leaf on Lindentree

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'''Light as Leaf on Lindentree''' is a poem written by [[J.R.R. Tolkien]] and published in June [[1925]] in ''The Gryphon'' magazine, Vol. 6 No. 6 on page 217. It was first written as part of ''[[The Lay of the Children of Húrin]]''.<ref>{{LB|1b}}, pp. 108-110</ref> The [[Lay of Leithian Canto III|third Canto]] of ''[[The Lay of Leithian]]'' was written after the poem's publication and was inspired by it.<ref>{{LB|C3}}, pp. 181-182</ref>
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'''Light as Leaf on Lindentree''' is a poem written by [[J.R.R. Tolkien]] and published in June [[1925]] in ''The Gryphon'' magazine, Vol. 6 No. 6 on page 217. It was incorporated into the second version of ''[[The Lay of the Children of Húrin]]''.<ref>{{LB|1b}}, pp. 108-110</ref> The [[Lay of Leithian Canto III|third Canto]] of ''[[The Lay of Leithian]]'' was written after the poem's publication and was inspired by it.<ref>{{LB|C3}}, pp. 181-182</ref>
  
After many emendations it became the [[Song of Beren and Lúthien]] that [[Strider]] chanted to the hobbits on [[Weathertop]], whose original version is contained in ''[[The Return of the Shadow]]''.<ref>{{RS|Attack}}, pp. 182-7</ref>
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After many emendations it became the ''[[Song of Beren and Lúthien]]'' that [[Strider]] chanted to the hobbits on [[Weathertop]], whose original version is contained in ''[[The Return of the Shadow]]''.<ref>{{RS|Attack}}, pp. 182-7</ref>
  
==The Poem==
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==Poem==
 
<poem style="font-style:italic; margin-left:20px;">
 
<poem style="font-style:italic; margin-left:20px;">
‘Tis of Beren Ermabwed brokenhearted,
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'Tis of Beren Ermabwed brokenhearted,
 
How Luthien the lissom he loved of yore
 
How Luthien the lissom he loved of yore
 
In the enchanted forest chained with wonder.
 
In the enchanted forest chained with wonder.
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And the early moon was glimmering.
 
And the early moon was glimmering.
 
There went her white feet lilting quick,
 
There went her white feet lilting quick,
And Dairon’s flute did bubble thin,
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And Dairon's flute did bubble thin,
 
As neath the hemlock umbels thick
 
As neath the hemlock umbels thick
 
Tinúviel danced a-shimmering.
 
Tinúviel danced a-shimmering.
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She danced upon a hillock green
 
She danced upon a hillock green
 
Whose grass unfading kissed her feet,
 
Whose grass unfading kissed her feet,
While Dairon’s fingers played unseen
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While Dairon's fingers played unseen
O’er his magic flute a-flickering;
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O'er his magic flute a-flickering;
 
And out he danced, unheeding, fleet,
 
And out he danced, unheeding, fleet,
 
In the moonlight to the hillock green:
 
In the moonlight to the hillock green:
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That fled him swiftly flickering.
 
That fled him swiftly flickering.
  
And longing filled his voice that called “Tinúviel Tinúviel”
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And longing filled his voice that called  
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'Tinúviel, Tinúviel,'
 
And longing sped his feet enthralled
 
And longing sped his feet enthralled
 
Behind her wayward shimmering.
 
Behind her wayward shimmering.
 
She heard as echo of a spell
 
She heard as echo of a spell
His lonely voice that longing called “Tinúviel Tinúviel”
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His lonely voice that longing called
 +
'Tinúviel, Tinúviel':
 
One moment paused she glimmering.
 
One moment paused she glimmering.
 +
 
And Beren caught that elfin maid
 
And Beren caught that elfin maid
 
And kissed her trembling starlit eyes,
 
And kissed her trembling starlit eyes,
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As once they did in Doriath,
 
As once they did in Doriath,
 
Shall go their white feet lilting quick,
 
Shall go their white feet lilting quick,
But never Dairon’s music thin
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But never Dairon's music thin
 
Be heard beneath the hemlocks thick,
 
Be heard beneath the hemlocks thick,
 
Since Beren came to Doriath.
 
Since Beren came to Doriath.

Latest revision as of 19:13, 21 October 2021

Light as Leaf on Lindentree is a poem written by J.R.R. Tolkien and published in June 1925 in The Gryphon magazine, Vol. 6 No. 6 on page 217. It was incorporated into the second version of The Lay of the Children of Húrin.[1] The third Canto of The Lay of Leithian was written after the poem's publication and was inspired by it.[2]

After many emendations it became the Song of Beren and Lúthien that Strider chanted to the hobbits on Weathertop, whose original version is contained in The Return of the Shadow.[3]

[edit] Poem

'Tis of Beren Ermabwed brokenhearted,
How Luthien the lissom he loved of yore
In the enchanted forest chained with wonder.
Tinúviel he named her, than nightingale
More sweet her voice, as veiled in soft
And wavering wisps of woven dusk
Shot with starlight, with shining eyes,
She danced like dreams of drifting sheen,
Pale twinkling pearls in pools of darkness.

The grass was very long and thin,
The leaves of many years lay thick,
The old tree-roots wound out and in,
And the early moon was glimmering.
There went her white feet lilting quick,
And Dairon's flute did bubble thin,
As neath the hemlock umbels thick
Tinúviel danced a-shimmering.

The pale moths lumbered noiselessly,
And daylight, died among the leaves,
As Beren from the wild country
Came thither wayworn sorrowing.
He peered between the hemlock sheaves,
And watched in wonder noiselessly
Her dancing through the moonlit leaves
And the ghostly moths a-following.

There magic took his weary feet,
And he forgot his loneliness,
And out he danced, unheeding, fleet,
Where the moonbeams were a-glistening.
Through the tangled woods of Elfinesse
They fled on nimble fairy feet,
And left him to his loneliness
In the silent forest listening,
Still hearkening for the imagined sound
Of lissom feet upon the leaves,
For music welling underground
In the dim-lit caves of Doriath.

But withered are the hemlock sheaves,
And one by one with mournful sound
Whispering fall the beechen leaves
In the dying woods of Doriath.
He sought her wandering near and far
Where the leaves of one more year werestrewn,
By winter moon and frosty star
With shaken light a-shivering.

He found her neath a misty moon,
A silver wraith that danced afar,
And the mists beneath her feet were strewn
In moonlight palely quivering.
She danced upon a hillock green
Whose grass unfading kissed her feet,
While Dairon's fingers played unseen
O'er his magic flute a-flickering;
And out he danced, unheeding, fleet,
In the moonlight to the hillock green:
No impress found he of her feet
That fled him swiftly flickering.

And longing filled his voice that called
'Tinúviel, Tinúviel,'
And longing sped his feet enthralled
Behind her wayward shimmering.
She heard as echo of a spell
His lonely voice that longing called
'Tinúviel, Tinúviel':
One moment paused she glimmering.

And Beren caught that elfin maid
And kissed her trembling starlit eyes,
Tinúviel whom love delayed
In the woods of evening morrowless.

Till moonlight and till music dies
Shall Beren by the elfin maid
Dance in the starlight of her eyes
In the forest singing sorrowless.
Wherever grass is long and thin,
And the leaves of countless years lie thick,
And ancient roots wind out and in,
As once they did in Doriath,
Shall go their white feet lilting quick,
But never Dairon's music thin
Be heard beneath the hemlocks thick,
Since Beren came to Doriath.

[edit] See also

References

  1. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Lays of Beleriand, "I. The Lay of the Children of Húrin: I. Túrin's Fostering", pp. 108-110
  2. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Lays of Beleriand, "III. The Lay of Leithian: Canto III (Beren's meeting with Lúthien)", pp. 181-182
  3. J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (ed.), The Return of the Shadow, "The First Phase: X. The Attack on Weathertop", pp. 182-7