Mechtild (mechtild) wrote,
Mechtild
mechtild

Happy 120th birthday, J.R.R. Tolkien, plus Jan's 'On the Greatness and Littleness of Being'

~*~

Happy 120th Birthday!


I am so grateful this man lived and created such wonders for so many to enjoy and cherish. And I love the photo below. It's from the cover of Tom Shippey's fine Author of the Century. The mood, the look of the sea, the time of day -- this is very much the way I picture the end of "The Grey Havens", Sam standing on the shore, looking long at the grey shifting sea over which Frodo has gone.

What Tolkien wrote, even if categorized 'Fantasy', always had the ring of 'been there, done that', from the external settings to the deepest experiences of the characters. He'd stood by the sea, he'd known irreparable loss. And turned it into unforgettable art.

Jan-u-wine, inspired by the photograph below, has written a beautiful tribute to the Professor for his birthday. It is posted below the image.









On the Greatness and Littleness of Being

Perhaps,
upon this shore,
a leaden dog
was lost,

perhaps
these waves

bore
the sway and chime
of a Ring-bearer's Sea Bell.

Perhaps,

upon a glimmer'd even-tide,
a swan-prow'd ship

ran out
amongst these rocks....


Perhaps mer-men
and their fish-tailed maids
cavorted here.

Perhaps..........

*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

He is a
Big Person,

this man.

Yet,
ever so greatly *small*,
inside,

his heart and artist's
fingers

filling the mind's vast
sky with the unending stars,


yet
bending,


to pluck,
with fragile deliberation,
a single, storied
shell

from the sun-gilded Sea.

He knows of littleness
and greatness,

this man.

He knows.

His face is worn now,
worn by all that is life:

the joys,
the sorrows,

the things he may touch
and those which he never

shall.

Ah.

Weary,
the eyes which have known
the ever-widening circles of the world,

weary
and

wise.

Full of loves known and yearnings
unfulfilled,


beyond time,

beyond place,

beyond Wood or Sea,
Mountain

or Shore,
beyond words

or pastel'd brush-strokes......

*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*

Birthdays and blessings.

The former, upon this day,
within the echoing shell
of these hours,
yours.

The latter, through the beauty
of your being,

from the grand music
of your pencil,
ours.







Tags: jan-u-wine, tolkien, tolkien's birthday
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