J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lost Christmas Poem

Many are unaware that the Lord of the Rings author was a lifelong Jesus-follower. Tolkien not only spoke openly of his faith, impacting the lives of many, including his close friend C.S. Lewis, but was also one of the translators of the Jerusalem Bible. This poem by Tolkien, first published in the obscure 1936 Annual of Our Lady’s School in Abington, England, was only recently rediscovered.

Kragujevac, Serbia - photo by Rakicevic Nenad (pexels.com)Photo by Rakicevic Nenad


by J.R.R. Tolkien

Grim was the world and grey last night:
The moon and stars were fled,
The hall was dark without song or light,
The fires were fallen dead.
The wind in the trees was like to the sea,
And over the mountains’ teeth
It whistled bitter-cold and free,
As a sword leapt from its sheath.

The lord of snows upreared his head;
His mantle long and pale
Upon the bitter blast was spread
And hung o’er hill and dale.
The world was blind, the boughs were bent,
All ways and paths were wild:
Then the veil of cloud apart was rent,
And here was born a Child.

The ancient dome of heaven sheer
Was pricked with distant light;
A star came shining white and clear
Alone above the night.
In the dale of dark in that hour of birth
One voice on a sudden sang:
Then all the bells in Heaven and Earth
Together at midnight rang.

Mary sang in this world below:
They heard her song arise
O’er mist and over mountain snow
To the walls of Paradise,
And the tongue of many bells was stirred
in Heaven’s towers to ring
When the voice of mortal maid was heard,
That was mother of Heaven’s King.

Glad is the world and fair this night
With stars about its head,
And the hall is filled with laughter and light,
And fires are burning red.
The bells of Paradise now ring
With bells of Christendom,
And Gloria, Gloria we will sing
That God on earth is come. 

About mitchteemley

Writer, Filmmaker, Humorist, Thinker-about-stuffer
This entry was posted in For Pastors and Teachers, Poetry, Religion/Faith and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

52 Responses to J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lost Christmas Poem

  1. atimetoshare.me says:

    What an amazing treasure to be found. Merry Christmas, Mitch, to you and your family. And may he bless you with a prosperous new year.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Ashi Joseph says:

    What an amazing poetry ♥️

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Oh, to have been an actual witness to this birth! Talk about the ultimate, where-were-you-when moment!

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Len Freeman says:

    Good choice… it’s one I sent out to my friends this year. Best and Blessings for your Christmas Mitch,
    Len Freeman+

    Liked by 3 people

  5. blindzanygirl says:

    Oh this is wonderful. Thankyou for telling us this. I never knew.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. That needs to be put to music!

    Liked by 3 people

  7. pastorpete51 says:

    What a great Christmas gift to share with us and what a wonderful poem! Thank you, Merry Christmas and all God’s very best to you and your family.

    Liked by 3 people

  8. Thank you for sharing this wonderful poem!

    Liked by 3 people

  9. Love this amazing poetry. Happy Holidays.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. cindy knoke says:

    I know he and his roundtable including CS Lewis were all Christians. Merry Christmas! 🎄🎁🎅🏼🦌❄🎊⛄

    Liked by 2 people

  11. What a marvelous poem. So appreciate the post. Thank you Mitch.

    Merry Christmas,


    Liked by 3 people

  12. revruss1220 says:

    That is so beautiful and moving. Thank you for sharing with us.
    Wishing a Merry and Meaning-filled Christmas to you and yours. You give us – your followers – so many delightful gifts throughout the year.

    Liked by 3 people

  13. Gary Fultz says:

    I love his way with words painting pictures. Thanks Mitch. Have a great Christmas.

    Liked by 3 people

  14. Pingback: ReBlogging ‘J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lost Christmas Poem’ – Link Below | Relationship Insights by Yernasia Quorelios

  15. A great poem from one of my favorite authors.

    Liked by 2 people

  16. Thank you, Mitch! God bless and Merry Christmas! Frank


    Liked by 3 people

  17. gpavants says:

    Thanks, Mitch. I love his poetry and this one is special. He did have a way with words.

    Liked by 3 people

  18. Reblogged this on How I found My Muchness and commented:
    Love this🥰

    Liked by 2 people

  19. pastorpete51 says:

    I love this poem you posted yesterday and thought you might include that its title is “Noel” Thank you for sharing as I had never even heard of this before. Blessings

    Liked by 3 people

  20. I really enjoyed re-visiting this comforting tale, but through Tolkien’s style of storytelling. Thank you Mitch and Merry Christmas.

    Liked by 3 people

  21. pkadams says:

    Lovely! Merry Christmas!

    Liked by 3 people

  22. Debi Walter says:

    Merry Christmas, Mitch. I have so enjoyed getting to know you this past year. Thank you for sharing your stories with us! We may read this poem tomorrow morning with our son and his family—Huge Tolkien fans.

    Liked by 3 people

  23. Carla says:

    What a beautiful poem to have been rediscovered. Thanks for sharing this and Merry Christmas to you and your family, Mitch.

    Liked by 3 people

  24. Kally says:

    I hope the magic of Christmas fills every corner of your heart and home with joy — now and always, a very Merry Christmas.

    Liked by 2 people

  25. Matilda Novak says:

    Thank you so much, Mitch.
    Christmas Blessings to you and yours.
    And Joy in the coming year….

    Liked by 2 people

  26. Pingback: J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lost Christmas Poem – MobsterTiger

  27. LaDonna Remy says:

    This is just beautiful. Thank you for sharing it. ❤

    Liked by 2 people

  28. Pingback: J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lost Christmas Poem – Nelsapy

  29. Tolkien’s Catholicism in The Lord of the Rings was not like a tree in an island(sticking out), rather, it was like the soil ( inconspicuously essential to life above it). His stories are amazing and my favorites. Appreciate you sharing this poem

    Liked by 2 people

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