Bagme Bloma (Bagmē Blomā)

As previously mentioned, J.R.R. Tolkien was a linguist. He was known to make up languages for fun and also translate songs or other writings into the two Elvish languages he created. He worked on reconstructing languages such as Medieval Welsh and Lombardic and also created the poem Bagme Bloma. This poem was an original work published in a collection called Songs of the Philologists, which is composed of satirical poems, famous tunes, and drinking songs. The poem is a very powerful piece using a birch tree as a symbol for something greater than human. Additionally, he refers to the birch as "she" which also hints that the tree or entity is a female. What I took from the poem was that the birch is a spiritual figure that looks over it's people. Her shadow is cast down from upon the mountain to protect and preserve their habitat and this is done in conjunction with the wind. As stated, "the winds call, they shake gently, she bends" almost as if she is submitting to the wind or allowing it to pass. Finally, she blesses the people with a language of mystery. This was only accomplished after the wind passed by. Not much analysis has been done on this poem, but I feel it should get more attention than it has.

Brunaim bairiþ Bairka bogum
laubans liubans liudandei,
gilwagroni, glitmunjandei,
bagme bloma, blauandei,
fagrafahsa, liþulinþi,
fraujinondei fairguni.

Wopjand windos, wagjand lindos,
lutiþ limam laikandei;
slaihta, raihta, hweitarinda,
razda rodeiþ reirandei,
bandwa bairhta, runa goda,
þiuda meina þiuþjandei.

Andanahti milhmam neipiþ,
liuhteiþ liuhmam lauhmuni;
laubos liubai fliugand lausai,
tulgus, triggwa, standandei
Bairka baza beidiþ blaika
fraujinondei fairguni.

The birch bears fine leaves on shining boughs,
it grows pale green and glittering,
the flower of the trees in bloom,
fair-haired and supple-limbed,
the ruler of the mountain.

The winds call, they shake gently,
she bends her boughs low in sport;
smooth, straight and white-barked,
trembling she speaks a language,
a bright token,
a good mystery,
blessing my people.

Evening grows dark with clouds,
the lightning flashes,
the fine leaves fly free,
but firms and faithful the white birch stands bare and waits,
ruling the mountain.