Poet and Swarthmore professor Craig Williamson is right at home in the in the world of Tolkienesque riddles. He is the editor of the definitive edition of The Old English Riddles of the Exeter Book and translator of A Feast of Creatures: Anglo-Saxon Riddle-Songs. Still, we were surprised to learn that he composed 16 new riddles for The Hobbit movie website.
Last week at the suggestion of Tom Shippey, the literary consultant for the latest Tolkien film adaptations and author of the foreword to Williamson's recent translation of "Beowulf" and Other Old English Poems, Warner Brothers invited Williamson to submit some riddles for a website based on The Hobbit chapter, "Riddles in the Dark." Here's one of Williamson's new riddles.
I am the oven forever baking.
I am the watch that wills your waking.
I am the life-bringer to every being.
I blind eyes and sustain seeing.
I am the shadow-shaper without a shade.
I disappear as dreams are made.
To see more riddles, visit The Hobbit movie website. Click on "View a Riddle," then click on "All Riddles" Then click on "Featured."
"It's a thrill to be part of all this," says Williamson. "My daughter says I need to negotiate family tickets to the world premiere!"