Monday is here, it's 'hug-a-tree' day in my little world. I had some strange last few days, although 'strange' is probably not the right word to describe them, so today I shall go and hug a tree. Think about how many trees you can find in Middle-earth : A holly tree guards the mines of Moria...the Two Trees of Valinor give a glorious light...Lothlorien is built in beautiful trees...The Shire has many trees including The Party Tree under which Bilbo will make his famous birthday speech. How many forest and woods you will explore in Middle-earth? Mirkwood, Fangorn, The Old Forest where Tom Bombadil lives and were Old Man Willow will talk to you...and then of course the Ents, the tree-like giants. I think we can safely assume and say that Professor Tolkien did love his trees, and so do I.
Tolkien 's deep love for trees began when he is only a child. As a young boy he uses trees as characters for his stories. William Shakepeare's Machbeth always interested Tolkien. A Scottish Lord that commits murder to become a king and is visited by a ghost who tell him the future. The ghost tell the Lord he will not be defeated unless a particular forest travels to fight him. The Lord Machbeth is reassured as he think that a forest cannot walk but he should not be so relaxed. At the end he is told a moving forest is heading towards his castle, the enemy's army in disguise with branches and leaves. This story fascinated Tolkien but he was also disappointed as he wanted a *real* forest to march to fight....and so that is exactly what he did in The Lord of the Rings, with the Ents.
His devotion to nature was absolutely fierce. He did not like any harm done to the countryside by industrial progress. "There are some devilry at work in the Shire," says Sam, when factories appear as an image in the Mirror of Galadriel. There are also very personal and intimate reasons for disliking factories. When he was very young he lived with his brother Hilary and his mother in a small cottage in the countryside and he loved every minute of it, he refers to this time at the cottage like " the longest-seeming and most formative part of my life." This wonderful time came to an end with the death of his mother. He and his brother were sent to live with a aunt in the city of Birmingham and from his window the only thing he could see was a factory. It is fair to say he did forever bound his love for nature and the countryside with the love for his mother and knowing this it is easy to see why he did try to make the world green again. The last known photograph of Tolkien, taken by his grandson Michael on August 9th 1973. It shows the Professor in the Oxford Botanical Gardens leaning against his favorite tree, the Black Pine he named Laocoon that is still there today.
If I look at the trees , if you look at the birds, and the sky and the stars and the clouds you will see the a whole joyful universe in front of you . You are happy and everything around you is peaceful and smiling at you. Look at the tree in front of you...he is happy for no reason, he is not going to be famous, he is not going to be rich and yet he is smiling at you...why? Do as the trees do...be happy for no reason.