I love languages. Especially spoken out loud. I love to gain glimpses of just how strange, bizarre and wonderful our methods of communcations are. Today, at my local toastmasters club meeting, the tabletopics were a little out of the ordinary in that we each got to recite a poem. Our club is open to all languages so it was no surprise to listen to poems in German, Swiss-German, Chinese, French and English. Each person chose to give the others a taste of his mother tongue.
I wanted to share some of the marvelous languages which have crossed my path: Lojban, Quenya, Breton, Ancient Greek, Anglo-Saxon, Swiss-German… The list is endless. In the end, I settled for Quenya, because I just couldn't find a suitable piece in Greek or Breton.
This reminded me of something mhwombat did a while back. Noting the Anglo-centrism of e2, he wanted to share his language with us, not in order to enforce his language upon us, but that we might enjoy the beauty of unfamiliar words and let them attempt to shape our lips. In the same spirit, I present to you Namárië, Galadriel's
Lament in Lórien. Share your language with me!
Ai! laurië lantar lassi súrinen,
yéni únótimë ve rámar aldaron!
Yéni ve lintë yuldar avánier
mi oromardi lissë-miruvóreva
Andúnë pella, Vardo tellumar
nu luini yassen tintilar i eleni
Sí man i yulma nin enquantuva?
An sí Tintallë Varda Oiolossëo
ve fanyar máryat Elentári ortanë
ar ilyë tier undulávë lumbulë
ar sindanóriello caita mornië
i falmalinnar imbë met,
ar hísië untúpa Calaciryo míri oialë.
Sí vanwa ná, Rómello vanwa, Valimar!
Namárië! Nai hiruvalyë Valimar!
Nai elyë hiruva! Namárië!
This poem and its translation can be found in The Lord of the Rings by Tolkien. Galadriel fell under the ban of the Valar during the first age and was forbidden from returning to Valinor. She fears that this interdict may yet hold. Her words show how heavily immortality weighs upon her and express her wish that Frodo may be shown the clemency which she was and may still be denied and that he may in time find Valinor.