What Have I Said? What Have I Done?

- Elvellon Ringsbane


“Bring me this mighty gift,” said he.
His words were wise, or seemed to be;
A gift to set my people free
Power to save the White City.

“You cannot use it,” so they said
“To evil all its deeds are led.”
Why are these wise ones filled with dread?
Truehearted Men are not misled.

The burden weighs upon his heart,
Fear grows beyond the healing art;
I see his pain, and in my heart
Pierces a nameless, hidden dart.

Already our company fails;
As if far off, I hear his wails
As in my arms he desperate flails;
Lost is our light in Shadow’s vales.

“Yet hope remains,” so says this queen.
For me, all’s lost in blinding sheen.
In this strange land, my thoughts unseen
Are laid bare by sight deadly keen.

At last I know what I desire.
Too fiercely burns the golden fire;
There is no hope without this thing,
Folly to thus destroy the Ring.

Time flows swifter than Anduin great;
Each day brings new, uncertain fate;
If I come not with mighty aid,
Proud Gondor’s walls in ashes laid.

We come at last to bitter choice;
All councils fail - I hear the voice
Of peril, all encompassing,
Deafening to those listening.

What could I not achieve in war?
I speak more fully than before
Driven at last by desperate need;
He listens, and he seems to heed.

But no! He will not come with me.
Blinded by wisdom, endlessly
He’s heard and listened to the wise
Deaf now to need, and to my cries.

What chance unhappy did bestow
Upon you, who so little know,
This treasure, and this hopeless quest?
Upon a fool all our hopes rest!

Mine it might fairly have been;
It should be mine! And fury’s sheen
With blinding fire springs to life;
It will be mine, even by strife.

Rage overcomes, transfiguring
My face, dispels doubt lingering;
One moment poised beyond the stone
He stands – ‘wildered I stand alone.

In vain I curse, and search the ground
Then fall, by my own curse struck down;
Reason returns, my madness passed,
I see with grief the truth at last.

Frodo! I cry, but call in vain.
Repentant tears, a burning rain
Fall, but they cannot purge this stain;
No balm save death to ease the pain.

In battle only can my name
Be saved from everlasting shame;
Dark hands grasp at those I cursed,
Words by my life to be reversed.

The black tide runs, bearing my death;
My sword sings high with biting breath;
All memories now drowned in blood,
Shame lost beneath the roaring flood.

Then swift and sudden come the songs,
Final repay for all my wrongs;
My sword falls silent as my breath
Is crushed beneath the weight of death.

The Fellowship in ruin lies;
Far off I hear the fading cries
Of the two Halflings, sent to save
I cursed instead to death and grave.

My horn is broken, like my oath;
It was my folly broke them both.
Small hope had we, now we have none.
What have I said? What have I done?