Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Did You Know?

Did you know that April is National Poetry Month? That's right: yay poetry! Since poetry is so beautiful and is often the neglected, forgotten younger sibling of novels, I'm going to highlight a poem each week during this month. If I was a better poet, I would include my own works, but alas, novels consume all of my creative spark at the moment.

I will give two poems today since I missed last week. Our first poet will be the famous J.R.R. Tolkien. Did you know that besides writing the wonderfully-crafted world of Lord of the Rings he also wrote poetry? There's some poetry in his novels, of course (such a sneaky way of publishing poems), but I didn't know for the longest time that he also had written a few stand-alone poems. So, without further ado, I give you two marvelously written poems by the fantasy king, J.R.R. Tolkien.


There was a man who dwelt alone, 
as day and night went past 
he sat as still as carven stone, 
and yet no shadow cast. 
The white owls perched upon his head
beneath the winter moon; 
they wiped their beaks and thought him dead
under the stars of June. 

There came a lady clad in grey
in the twilight shining: 
one moment she would stand and say,
her hair with flowers entwining. 
He woke, as had he sprung of stone, 
and broke the spell that bound him; 
he clasped her fast, both flesh and bone, 
and wrapped her shadow round him. 

There never more she walks her ways
by sun or moon or star; 
she dwells below where neither days
nor any nights there are. 
But once a year when caverns yawn 
and hidden things awake, 
they dance together then till dawn
and a single shadow make. 


Grey as a mouse,
Big as a house, 
nose like a snake, 
I make the earth shake, 
As I tramp through the grass;
Trees crack as I pass. 
With horns in my mouth 
I walk in the South, 
Flapping big ears. 
Beyond count of years
I stump round and round, 
Never lie on the ground, 
Not even to die. 
Oliphant am I,
Biggest of all, 
Huge, old, and tall. 
If ever you'd met me, 
You wouldn't forget me. 
If you never do, 
You won't think I'm true;
But old Oliphaunt am I, 
And I never lie. 

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