Saturday, 5 April 2014

Early Birthday Present

Friday last week I arrived home from work to a brilliant surprise.

Many years ago my Grampy, who was a Tolkien fan like myself, passed on a massive poster along with a Tolkien Bestiary, The Journeys of Frodo and a very old copy of The Silmarillion. The poster has spent most of the intervening years rolled up and stored in a cupboard, or more recently in the spare (bed)room.

I've been saying for ages that I want to get it framed because I'm concerned about it getting damaged. It's Tolkien's poem Bilbo's Last Song with a large illustration by Pauline Baynes (his favourite illustrator). I used to regularly get it out and look at it, until I got a copy of the poem in book form (also illustrated by Baynes) and since then it's just been kept out of the way in a safe place. Which is a shame because it's beautiful.

Mr Click snuck it out the house a few weeks ago, then worried I would notice it missing and came clean about it going away to get framed, but I wasn't expecting to come home and find it mounted on the wall at the bottom of the staircase. It's like that bit of wall was made for it; it's out of the way of the sunlight that could fade it and I can look at it each time I pass it. Each time I go by I've been trying to memorise another line or two because it's a lovely poem and it's been years since I last tried memorising a poem (something I did regularly as a child and teen).

I've also been doing a bit of digging since we got it framed and displayed and it looks as though it's quite a valuable poster. There was one being sold on eBay in poorer condition than mine for over £150! There's a slight bit of creasing to mine at the bottom but other than that it's pristine and now it's behind glass it'll stay that way for years to come.

Apparently the poem was never published in Tolkien's lifetime and the poster was created the year after he died. I wish I knew where my Grampy had got it from, I know he told me that he wanted to get it framed and hung up. I'm glad that I've got it done at last, and I can't wait to show it off whenever we have guests.


  1. What a find! And a good feeling I'm sure that you've given it life again and a place of honor.

    1. It really is. It makes me so happy every time I pass it on the stairs.


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