Ode To Tolkien

Disclaimer: Original poem © 2003 Istari Media.  All Rights Reserved for written work.  No copyright expressed or implied with Howard Shore's accompaniment in attached audio file.  Used only for supplementation.  This is not a commercial endeavor but rather a passion project.

 

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I LOVE The Lord of the Rings.  I fell in love with it at a young age and never fell out of love for it.  I could say so much, but I would encourage you to read my recent blog on it.

I wrote this in in 2003. This was truly a labor of love. I am a huge fan of Tolkien's poetry and prose, and sought to sculpt this in the same rhyme and meter. I hope this inspires you!  The written version below is mine; the audio version preceding it is a dramatic reading set to various stirring Howard Shore Lord of the Rings tracks.  I hope you thoroughly enjoy this.  As a voiceover artist, and one that loves to voice projects with a British accent, I couldn't resist.

This poem is featured in my custom homemade keepsake edition, entitled "The Lord of the Rings: 2007 Expanded Edition.  This version contains extended dialogue and backstory from Tolkien's unpublished works as recorded by his son Christopher Tolkien in The War of the Ring and The Treason of Isengard.  I included these passages and in fact penned some of my own, because I am continually seeking ways to pay large fines for copyright infringement.  The truth of the matter is that I wanted to create an exhaustive version of this grand oeuvre, this behemoth masterpiece: my heart's desire had been so captivated by it since my pizza-faced days.

  

In my book - completed in 2007 and entitled The Lord of the Rings: 2007 Expanded Edition - I also included photos from Peter Jackson's and New Line Cinema's trilogy where pertinent to the story flow.

Below is the written form of my poem following the audio production.  I hope you enjoy both!

Read the preface from my book, essentially, an "essay" on why I love The Lord of the Rings.

 

Audio Form:

 

Written Form:

Ode To Tolkien

© 2003 Istari Media

 

When heavy mist strayed in the dells

There came He weaving golden spells,

One Ring he wrought, and nineteen brought,

Up from the Sea, over the fells

 

In eyries safe above the Wold,

He boldly there His story told,

With palantír He far saw near

And gently wrought His world of old

 

A Silmaríl of ire and mirth

Descended He to Middle-earth

With flash and flames He gave them names

Empowering soul and spirit’s birth

 

Elanor created He

And mallorn: towering, golden tree

Pale niphredil: He knew it well

From Númenor across the Sea

 

There flowering groves of iris grew

Forget-me-nots made soil blue

Within the vale there grew so frail

The evermind, nasturtiums too.

 

From Gulf of Lune to Nimrodel

Henneth Annûn to Rhosgobel

He gave them start by magic art

Mitheithel and Emyn Muil

 

Mithril He delved for under fount

In caverns deep beneath the mount

And golden jools: the bane of fools

For dragon’s lust was paramount.

 

The first sapling of great Mirkwood

And foaming waters of Greyflood

These made He strong, and great their throng

And prospered them as He deemed good

 

Then made He Shire and Lorien

Hollin, Mount Mindolluin

And Morgul Vale wherein hearts fail

Past proud Gondor constructed then

 

Through down and fen of grassy Rohan

To set sail from Grey Havens then

From Amroth far to Gorgoroth

And Seven Streams of Lebennin

 

The tributaries of Anduin

Free from the ash of Orodruin

Past Argonath, Osgiliath

To Belfalas and back again

 

And Tol Brandir the isle of rock

Was leagues away from milky chalk

On stony hill of Bombadil

Still far from home of Brandybuck

 

With circlets silver, fillets gold

And flaxen-pale hair flowing cold:

Through these He birthed through Middle-earth

Such beings as then would fit their mold

 

Mysterious made He Bombadil

Ere race was born of iron-will

Crying “Merry-O” and “Berry-O”

With River-Daughter drank their fill

 

He molded Elves and formed He men

In holes set halflings then therein

And Dwarves gave He to flowering sea

Of stone and quarry to chisel in

 

From acorn blessed He great Fangorn

From lineage crowned He Aragorn

In woods of gold from days of old:

Galadriel and Celeborn.

 

Sweet Rivendell He made for Elf

And for the Dwarf deep Dwarrowdelf

Then Isengard for Wizard hard

For Man the City of seven-shelf.

 

The Ents dwelt deep in Fangorn’s core

As fire leapt up in Sammath Naur

Whilst dead of kin filled Rath Dínen

In Minas Tirith, in Gondor.

 

The Rohirrim, the Galadhrim

The Onodrim, the Sindarin

These made He flower in craft and power

To breathe out life from deep within

 

Great Gwaihir, eagle, Swift Windlord

And Asfaloth for flight to ford

The fell Cave-Troll, and drums that roll

In Moria where Balrog roared.

 

These made He well along with Grond

And Orcs led He across Morthond

But Southron dart went not to heart

Of Faramir nor Beregond.

 

‘Tween Dwarves and Elves was kindled strife

Which segregated life from life

Deep Khazad-dûm and elvish moon

Were only close as blade of knife.

 

In spells unbroken dwelt the Wight

In barrows cold with pale light

Within their downs, they clinked their crowns

And lingered there by sleepless night.

 

Enclosed within Ephel Dúath

The Mountain vomits up its wrath

With blackened fume through hopeless gloom

He blanketed its cone with ash.

 

The Dark Lord Sauron of Mordor:

Him wreathed in smoke at Barad-dûr.

The Lidless Eye, vast shadow nigh,

The Nazgõl made He servants for

 

Three Rings for Elves under the sky

Nine unto men destined to die,

For Dwarves with stone, Seven were shone

And One for Sauron of the Lie.

 

The Ring was made to serve him well

Beyond all powers dark and fell

Perceived they all with grievous call:

Him they would fight with counterspell.

 

With great Elf-strength was crowned Elrond

And Elf-life stretched He overlong

The Last Alliance came in defiance

In vast array and armies strong

 

Isildur son of Elendil

Held sword that would be Andúril

Anárion, the other son

Fought not in vain, clean earth to till.

 

Unfurled they banners Elven-high

As standards broke beneath the sky

The hammer fall: Narsil’s death-knell

And horror was the Dark Lord’s cry.

 

Then Threw He down their Nemesis

Freed peoples unto genesis

The Ruling Ring: a vanished Thing

Until the ages should persist.

 

For Isildur came but never home

The Ring kept he unto his own

Him it betrayed, orcs him then slayed

The Ring passed into place unknown.

 

For it was Sauron’s then no more

Thus Isildur avenged his fore

The foe was slain, his power wane

His spirit fled to darkened shore

 

The ages beat on timeless plain

The Ring: but a memory of pain

‘Til then was found, deep underground

Sauron’s heirloom yet once again

 

Along the banks of Anduin

There came two friends to frolic in

Déagol came and Sméagol same

But only one went home to kin.

 

For Déagol found the Ruling Ring

On River’s bed, a pretty thing

But Sméagol craved, He Déagol graved

And Gollum came thus into being.

 

They called him names, he bit their feet

Then slunk he ‘way to places deep

It him consumed in cold, dark tomb

‘Til Bilbo came and stole from sleep

 

The Ring, and took it far away:

Dominion claimed him there that day.

‘Til Wizard told of Shadow old

Whence came it unto Frodo’s stay.

 

The Ringwraiths grasped their swords of steel

They smelt with nose that was not real

Yet living not, the Ring they sought:

With fervency of lust and will.

 

The Halfling stood, all folk came in

As Council forged a hope dread thin:

Would great Mount Doom become the tomb

For Sauron’s Ring to vanish in?

 

There wisdom called for proper course

To purge the world of Sauron’s force

In Mount Doom’s fire, destroyed with ire

The Ring must return to its source.

 

The doom-bell rolled in Imladris

Whereas before was all amiss

The bane of all, with sunset’s fall

On Frodo lay they burden this

 

A meddler in issues dire

‘Twas Gandalf, slave of Secret Fire

He felt the Pit, and so was fit

To ravage foe with white-hot ire

 

Both Radagast and Mithrandir,

Subservient to Curunír

Survived the test as wizards, lest

They too become enslaved to fear.

 

Of Saruman He made craft fail

Before those last to leave set sail

His wisdom died, no more allied

With Elves nor Men through sad betrayal

 

Merry sent He and Peregrin

Then Boromir at Parth Galen

There paid his due, defending two

From Uruk-hai which captured them

 

The King of Rohan aged sat

Upon His throne in weakness that

Didst thin like air when Gandalf there

Spoke staves of healing and lifted threat

 

Then Rohan’s lord with creak and crack

Thus straightened up his weathered back

He led the raid to Gondor’s aid;

Tho’ death and glory be his rack

 

On Shadowfax White Rider rode

The weary pilgrim less his load

And Glamdring rang as allies sang

When Mithrandir led Rohan’s road

 

Yet Saruman was still to thwart

The Onodrim with doom came forth

The rock they ground with booming sound

And leveled Isengard by force

 

And all the while the brave twain went

With Eärendil’s star the night was rent

Through Ithilien clear with Faramir

Frodo and Sam pursued their meant

 

But made He Gollum lust-filled trail

The faithful twain to Morgul Vale

Betrayed he them to Shelob’s web

In Cirith Ungol Frodo paled.

 

For Gollum, Sméagol nevermore

Slave to “the precious,” as he swore

He feigned reform, gave them to storm

In cold revenge he plotted gore

 

Then stout Samwise saved Frodo’s keep

As he lay there by cliffs asleep

Sam bore his weight and kept his fate

Unto the fiery mountain deep.

 

But first would fealty take its toll

He rescued Frodo from Morgul

The sentinels passed, whereby at last

Came they to Mount Doom, weary in soul

 

Then one day war dyed red the skies

As light of battle filled the eyes

Of orcs and men in battle grim

With Minas Tirith as the prize.

 

The Witch-King fell with malice hard

O’er Théoden Éowyn stood her guard

Whilst Merry crept in Nazgûl’s step

Before its head she clove ashard.

 

On fields of blood named Pelennor

There mighty names lived nevermore

They fought with pride, and so they died

To aid the Ringbearer in his chore

 

There Elf with bow and Dwarf with axe

And Gandalf upon Shadowfax

With Strider strode, Éomer rode

Them down, the orcs, to bloody wax.

 

With war abroad, the three alone:

Sam, Frodo pierced the Mountain’s cone

At last the Ring, and suffering

Along with Gollum went unknown.

 

Then Barad-dûr the Mighty broke

The Dark Lord vanquished, up in smoke

He came to naught; his absence brought

To Middle-earth peace to all folk.

 

Thus from the broken line of Kings

Came Aragorn on silver wings

The Elfstone reigned, the Throne regained

By Dúnadan, once least of beings

 

And so was wrought the greatest tale

Of valiant life and death so pale

Thus Tolkien wove a tale that strove

To charge the mind and set the sails

 

On anvil smote He greatest note

Of yore which forged would cast the vote

The world amaze with bravest days

Of Middle-earth, of arms, His coat

 

And then He died but legend stayed

To tarry far beyond His day

Enchanting tale would never fail

To please the heart and lead the way