Tolkien Gateway

The Ent and the Entwife

The Ent and the Entwife is a song recited to Merry and Pippin by Treebeard, concerning the longing of the Ents for their lost Entwives.[1]

The poem is found within The Two Towers. J.R.R. Tolkien remarked that the song might be evidence for there being "no re-union in 'history'" between the Ents and the Entwives[2].

[edit] The poem

 
Ent:

When spring unfolds the beechen-leaf and sap is in the bough,
When light is on the wild-wood stream, and wind is on the brow,
When stride is long, and breath is deep, and keen the mountain air,
Come back to me! Come back to me, and say my land is fair!

Entwife:

When Spring is come to garth and field, and corn is in the blade,
When blossom like a shining snow is on the orchard laid,
When sun and shower upon the earth with fragrance fill the air,
I'll linger here, and will not come, because my land is fair!

Ent:

When Summer lies upon the world, and in a noon of gold
Beneath the roof of sleeping leaves the dreams of trees unfold,
When woodland halls are green and cool, and wind is in the West,
Come back to me! Come back to me, and say my land is best!

Entwife:

When Summer warms the hanging fruit and burns the berry brown;
When straw is gold, and ear is white, and harvest comes to town;
When honey spills, and apple swells, though wind be in the West,
I'll linger here beneath the Sun, because my land is best!

Ent:

When Winter comes, the winter wild that hill and wood shall slay;
When trees shall fall and starless night devour the sunless day;
When wind is in the deadly East, then in the bitter rain
I'll look for thee, and call to thee; I'll come to thee again!

Entwife:

When Winter comes, and singing ends; when darkness falls at last;
When broken is the barren bough, and light and labour past;
I'll look for thee, and wait for thee, until we meet again:
Together we will take the road beneath the bitter rain!

Both:

Together we will take the road that leads into the West,
And far away will find a land where both our hearts may rest.

[edit] References

  1. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, The Two Towers, "Treebeard"
  2. J.R.R. Tolkien; Humphrey Carpenter, Christopher Tolkien (eds.), The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, Letter 338, (dated 6 June 1972)