I have set Taliesin's Battle Of The Trees within two other pieces of writing,
firstly Tacitus' report of the Roman invasion of the Druid island of Angelsey,
followed by another poem by Taliesin which had been mixed in with The Battle of The Trees in a method of concealment to hide the poems meaning from those without understanding.
For the written poem and more details about its meaning, please see my Blog;
( celestialelfdanceoflife.blogspot.com/2011/07/battle-of-trees.html )
The Book of Taliesin is attributed to the 6th C. poet Taliesin and preserves a few hymns, a small collection of elegies and also enigmatic poems such as The Battle of Trees and The Spoils of Annwfn, in which the poet claims to have sailed to another world with King Arthur and his warriors.
The Battle of the Trees poem itself famously details the legendary Gwydion's account of the trees of the forest which he enchanted to fight as his army against Arawan.
Within the ranks of Arawn's forces were a number of mighty warriors, and one of these was invincible as long as his name remained a secret.
Gwydion the enchanter rightly guessed the secret name and won the battle saying these words:
Sure-hoofed my spurred horse,
On your shield Alder sprigs,
Bran is your name, Bran of the branches.
Sure-hoofed my horse of war,
On your hand are sprigs of Alder,
Bran you are, by the branch you bear.
However as Robert Graves explores in his book 'The White Goddess'
( amazon.co.uk/White-Goddess-Historical-Grammar-Poetic/dp/0571174256 )
the poem is particularly notable for its striking and enigmatic symbolism and the wide variety of interpretations this has occasioned.
Graves suggests that the trees in this poem correspond to the ancient Ogham alphabet, in which each alphabetic character represents a specific musical note, seasonal cycle, mythological tale and deity.
Graves thus argued that the original poet had concealed Druidic secrets about an older matriarchal Celtic religion for fear of censure from Christian authorities, that Arawn and Bran were names for the same underworld god and that the battle was probably not physical but rather a struggle of wits and scholarship: Gwydion's forces could only be defeated if the name of his companion, Lady Achren ("Trees"), was guessed, and Arawn's host only if Bran's name was guessed.
As Taliesin and The Bagpipes, Celestial Elf.
As Witches: Brooke Baran, Minxy Kimono, Sienna Panthar, Wicked2712 Bearsfoot,
As Druids: Mikee Martian, Obizoth, Yichard Muni,
As Celtic Warriors: Azzaro, Donjulio Siamendes, Scheer Eberhatz.
All Also doubled as Tree Avatars.
Grateful Thanks to Taliesin the Bardic Poet, and to Robert Graves for his inestimable research,
to Tacitus for recording Cornelius Tacitus historical account of the Roman attack on Angelsey, Annals XIV,
( roman-britain.org/places/mona.htm )
Also to Freesound.org/
for use of their music and audio samples from which I created the soundtrack
Creative Commons Sampling Plus 1 Licence
Many thanks to
Sliver Gray for providing Dryad Avatars, Auburn, Sapling, Nelroth and
Lazrith Fardel for providing Alder and Dark Treant avatars,
Other props include Bagpipe Bird Avatar by Nowhere Phobos,
The Ent by Papadopoulus Barzane,
Piscium Navis Houseboat by Marcus Parrott.
Gaia, co Enchantress Sao,
Ruins Falls, co Sliver Gray,
Tir Na nOg at Mystica co FreeSky Republic
Filmed on SecondLife via Phoenix 18.104.22.1688,
On Windows XP using Fraps and Serif MoviePlus X3.
Casting Coordinator Sienna Panthar,
Conceived, Directed and Produced by Celestial Elf 2011
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