Tuesday, July 2, 2024

The Collected Poems of J.R.R. Tolkien

For a long dead author, Tolkien certainly is publishing a good deal. Come mid-September of this year one will be able to buy The Collected Poems of J.R.R. Tolkien. Here is the Official Description from the publisher:

World first publication of the collected poems of J.R.R. Tolkien, spanning almost seven decades of the author’s life and presented in an elegant three-volume hardback boxed set.

J.R.R. Tolkien aspired to be a poet in the first instance, and poetry was part of his creative life no less than his prose, his languages, and his art. Although Tolkien’s readers are aware that he wrote poetry, if only from verses in The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, its extent is not well known, and its qualities are underappreciated. Within his larger works of fiction, poems help to establish character and place as well as further the story; as individual works, they delight with words and rhyme. They express his love of nature and the seasons, of landscape and music, and of words. They convey his humour and his sense of wonder.

The earliest work in this collection, written for his beloved, is dated to 1910, when Tolkien was eighteen. More poems would follow during his years at Oxford, some of them very elaborate and eccentric. Those he composed during the First World War, in which he served in France, tend to be concerned not with trenches and battle, but with life, loss, faith, and friendship, his longing for England, and the wife he left behind. Beginning in 1914, elements of his legendarium, ‘The Silmarillion’, began to appear, and the ‘Matter of Middle-earth’ would inspire much of Tolkien’s verse for the rest of his life.

Within The Collected Poems of J.R.R. Tolkien almost 200 works are presented across three volumes, including more than 60 that have never before been seen. The poems are deftly woven together with commentary and notes by world-renowned Tolkien scholars Christina Scull & Wayne G. Hammond, placing them in the context of Tolkien’s life and literary accomplishments and creating a poetical biography that is a unique and revealing celebration of J.R.R. Tolkien.

Beyond that, one interesting fact is that since Christopher Tolkien has sadly passed to the Halls of Mandos obviously someone else had to put this together. Somebodies as a matter of fact, Christina Scull and Wayne G. Hammond, Tolkien scholars both as well as wife and husband whom have worked on many Tolkien-related projects.

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