The Glade of Galadriel

- jan-u-wine

2  3 

* * * * * *

1.


It is peaceful within this land,
 
peaceful
to be held
 
safe
beneath trees
that fairly sing
 
with the knowing of the Lady's voice,
 
 
peaceful,
the time-tide
 
slowing
to all but nothing
 
'midst the silver web
of her devising,   
 
tender time-fleece
of bronze day
 
spilling
to blue-grey night,
 
Moon-fingers
 
playing
soft upon
 
jetted crystal fountains,
fine-gold
 
mallorn,
 
night-diadem'd elanor.
 
Within these borders,
close-held by the fair thrall
of her spell,
 
it is
 
peaceful.
 
It is..........
 
 
 
 
 
perilous.
 
 
 
Overthrown by peril,
 
the dremes which
visit
 
me,
 
dremes of nothing....
 
dremes of
 
every thing:
 
of
dread
 
and dark
and shadow unnameable....
 
 
I may not rest,
finally,
 
beneath the weight of them.
 
Of more peril this waking
than
 
any dreme,
 
for the Lady calls me.
 
Without words,
arms adrift upon the winds of night,
 
feet bare and pale as any maids',
she ......
 
calls...
 
me.
 
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
 
It is cold within the encirclement of her glade,
 
cold,
 
the winter-water moon all but spent,
small stars
 
arrayed upon the dark cloak
of the sky.
 
Fair crowned with them she is,
the gold-silver of her hair
 
shining like cold-spun fire
in their light.
 
Beyond wonder,
her beauty,
 
beyond all thought,
the peril of her eye,
 
the magik of her slender hand.
 
Fine-wrought silver,
her voice, then,
 
like strings upon a lyre,
 
like
 
the far-off sound of  wind-combed
leaves.
 
 
More love than I have ever known blossoms like a wound inside of me.
 
Hard behind it rides a fear even greater.
 
 
 
Will I look into the Mirror?
 
Oh, my Lady of Beauty,
 
my Lady of Wisdom and Light:
 
What shall I look for?
 
Tell me,
 
my Lady of Peril,
 
What shall I See?


top
2.


What shall I look for?


What shall I see?
 

*    *     *     *     *
 
Like the unwilling
touch
 
of your foot
upon my stair,
 
this question,
 
like the hesitant
light
 
that falls
from the fading stars.
 
In another time,
another
 
place,
 
your Lady
should have answered you.
 
With great words,
 
bound equal
 
with beauty
and perilous pride,
 
she should
have answered you.
 
A different Age
that was,
 
an Age
when the World
was not yet worn
 
by evil,
an Age echoing yet
with Song.
 

Within this glade,
there is no Song,
 
no gentle resonance
of the tender crafting of a world,
 
no answer
to the darkness
 
waiting, with surety,
 
beyond
time-slowed borders.
 
There is only this moment,
sharp and fine
 
as adamant,
 
this moment,
and
 
you,
 
you,
undone
upon the knife-point
of your fear,
 
your desire.
 
You will look.
 
Without words passing between us,
I feel your frightened thought:
 
you
must.
 

I know what you will see.
 
And the glade becomes dark,
 
midnight'd and cold
with your seeing.
 
Your fear
beats
 
like a hammer
upon me,
 
grief twisting
and spilling
 
like Sea waves
on a winter-deep day.
 
It is your heart
I feel in my throat,
 
your tears that
close my eyes,
 
your.....
 
terror
that opens them, at the last.
 

He
 
has found
you.


top
3.



He has found me.
 
 
 
At last,
 
he
has,
 
the evil-tatter'd
ribbon
 
of dark mouthings
touching
 
my mind
with foul purpose.
 
I do not
understand
 
these words.
 
No matter:
the black
 
meaning of them
closes my throat,
 
as if dead fingers
held me fast.
 
I cannot look away,
cannot
 
stop
the words
 
which pull me to him.
 
In a moment,
he shall have me,
 
entire.
 
From outside myself,
there is light,
 
Like the wings of some
great Sea-bird of the West,
 
it is,
assailing with ancient purpose
our fearsome enemy.
 
 
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
 
Ghostly vapor
 
rises
yet upon the sudden-still air.
 
In the end,
I did
 
not
touch the water.
 
Nor he,
me.
 
The grace of light
still falls
 
about the lady.
 
Sweetly it flows
from her outstretched hand,
 
crowns with silver'd gold
the cloak of her hair.
 
Within my mind,
 
she, too,
speaks,
 
her words
as fearful
 
as those which
I have but late
 
escaped.
 
With dark truth
she speaks.
 
Oh, my Lady.
 
How shall I go on?


top
4.


How should he go on,
 
this....
small being from under-hill?
 
How should
I go on,
 
with the final
night,
 
like the blooded
feet of winter-wolves,
 
waiting at my door?
 
And......
this odd creature,
 
with the light
growing within him
 
(ever joined and
 
enjoined
by the dark twin
 
of desire),
 
is he to be our
ending hope?
 
He can not
know
 
that this
is but a tattered corner
 
of the tapestry
of this Age-long tale.
 
He can not know
that his simple
 
despair
is but a single lace'd wave
upon a storm-riven Sea.
 
He can not know
 
what
my own despair
 
might yet
force upon me.
 
 
It is not only
his companions
 
whose needful
gaze
 
seeks out
the golden song
 
of this fell
thing.
 
 
 
 
In all the hours
of the day
 
(and all the days of the Ages,
before,
 
even,
there were Ages),
 
I have fought against this Darkness,
 
watched
as the black tide
 
of it
retreated
 
and
returned,
 
bound myself,
even
 
to the starless
night
 
of his thoughts
that I might
 
confuse
the workings
 
of dread intent. 
 
 
 
I am of the Eldar.
 
The People of the Stars,
we are,
 
strong in will
and wisdom,
 
holding
The Great Music
 
close to heart.
 
 
Evil
has no place
with us.
 
 
It has no place with
me.
 
 
In all the tireless
watches
 
of endless days,
 
 
It has had no place
with me.
 
 
 
 
Now,
 
at last,
 
a question,
an offer,
 
a gift
to leaven
 
the gathering dark.
 
Ah,
 
beautiful beyond all thought
would I be then,
 
restorer
of all that has faded,
 
renewer
of kingdoms forgotten,
 
rebuilder,
even,
 
of that which sleeps
beneath the wave.
 
Men would shield
their eyes
 
before the golden
radiance
 
of my deeds.
 
The Netted Jewels
would dim before my Light.
 
 
 
 
Sundered indeed,
then,
 
should I be,
 
and all the world,
withal,
 
broken about me,
 
consigned
by me
 
to silence
eternal.
 
 
Never
should my ear
 
hear the Sea-song,
 
never
should my fugitive eyes
 
behold the rain-grey'd curtain,
 
never
should my feet
 
run with joy
to greet my kin.
 
 
 
I know now,
 
who I am,
 
who,
always,
 
I was meant to be:
 
Galadriel,
Elf-maid,
 
servant
to the Undying West.
 
 
After all is done,
perhaps yet
 
it may be granted
me to find it.
 
When all
is
 
done,
Ring-bearer,
 
we
shall find it.*
 
 
I shall not then be diminished.
 
Nor you,
ever again
 
alone.
 
_____________________________
 
Author's Notes:  the story of Galadriel is a complex one, spanning literally thousands of years.  I have tried to touch upon events in her life that formed the crux of her terrible choice in the Glade, but interested readers may delve further into her story at The Thain's Book:
 
http://www.tuckborough.net/galadriel.html
 
I think you will see that her choice diminished her not at all, but rendered her simply and purely a complete being of beauty, NOT 'terrible' beauty.
 
 
*In order to work around events that the movies placed out of context with the books (and also to include a work of wondrous value and beauty), I have done some event flipping myself.  In the book, Galadriel, upon the departure of the Fellowship from Lorien, and knowing that it was unlikely that Frodo would escape permanent damage from bearing the Ring, expresses, in song, her wish that he might find peace in Valimar (a city of the Valar in Valinor).  I have 'flipped' that time line to the Mirror scene, her perceiving that, should he win through, not only would she have the choice to go over Sea, but Frodo, as well. 
 
Here is a wonderful reading of "Galadriel's Lament" by Tolkien.  You may not understand the words, but he reads them with so much power and feeling that your heart will hear them easily.
 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6de_SbVUVfA&NR=1
 
By way of contrast, a sung version, full of yearning:
 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BmtBleOQSz0
 
It is rumoured that Galadriel was instrumental in the healing of Frodo, over Sea. 
 
http://tolkiengateway.net/wiki/Galadriel
 
No doubt the reason behind the knowing smile she gave him at the Grey Havens.