Lay of Leithian Canto III
|Lay of Leithian cantos|
This Canto starts out with the tale of Thingol and Melian. Then it gives a description of Lúthien their daughter, and tells how Beren watched in amazement. Dairon warns Lúthien, and she hides, but Beren touches her arm by accident. Again Beren searches, and months later catches her again, naming her Tinúviel. Below is recounted the second meeting.
- He sped toward the hillock green,
- the lissom limbs, the dancing sheen;
- he leapt upon the grassy hill
- his arms with loveliness to fill:
- his arms were empty, and she fled;
- away, away her white feet sped.
- But as she went he swiftly came
- and called her with the tender name
- of nightingales in elvish tongue,
- that all the woods now sudden rung:
- "Tinúviuel! Tinúviel!"
- And clear his voice was as a bell;
- its echoes wove a binding spell
- "Tinúviel! Tinúviel!"
- His voice such love and longing filled
- one moment stood she, fear was stilled;
- one moment only; like a flame
- he leaped towards her as she stayed
- and caught and kissed that elfin maid.
- As love there woke in sweet surprise
- the starlight trembled in her eyes.
- A! Lúthien! A! Lúthien!
- more fair than any child of Men;
- O! loveliest maid of Elfinesse,
- what madness does thee now possess!
- A! lissom limbs and shadowy hair
- and chaplet of white snowdrops there;
- O! starry diadem and white
- pale hands beneath the pale moonlight!
- She left his arms and slipped away
- just at the breaking of the day.
- Lines 727-757