Let All the Foes of Gondor Flee

These found poems are taken from various passages, found in each of the volumes of LotR -- from "The Council of Elrond" in FotR, from "The Departure of Boromir" and "The Uruk-hai" in TTT, and from "Minas Tirith" in RotK.

Let All the Foes of Gondor Flee

A Series of Found Poems in Five Parts

I

He bore a long sword, and also a war-horn --
"Loud and clear it sounds in the valleys,
Then let all the foes of Gondor flee!"

He blew a blast, the echoes leapt.
From rock to rock, the echoes leapt,
All heard that voice, sprang to their feet.

"Slow should you be to wind horn again,
Until on the borders of your land
And dire need is on you."

"Maybe; but always I let my horn cry.
At setting forth, I let my horn cry,
And though we walk in shadows,
I go not forth as a thief."

II

Quick ears caught cries, the harsh voices of Orcs!
Then great horn blew, a deep-throated call;
The blasts smote the hills, echoed in hollows,
Rising, a mighty shout above roaring falls.

"The horn of Boromir! He is in need!
Alas! An ill fate on me this day."

Desperately the horn was blowing,
Fierce, shrill yells of Orcs -- suddenly horn-calls ceased.
Aragorn raced down, but the sounds died away;
He could hear them no more.

Not far from the lake, he found Boromir.
Many Orcs slain, piled about him;
Pierced with many arrows, sword still in hand
Broken at hilt, horn cloven in two --

Boromir did not speak again.

III

In Pippin's head, memory pieced itself together;
They had run a long way -- Orcs!
But the Orcs did not wish to fight,
Tried only to lay hold.

Boromir had come leaping; he made them fight!
Slew many, rest fled -- attacked again.
A hundred Orcs at least, some very large!
A rain of arrows: always at Boromir...

Boromir had blown his great horn;
The woods rang! Orcs dismayed had drawn back.
But no answer but echoes came.
They attacked more fiercely; then darkness fell.

What has happened to Boromir?

IV

"You speak of his death; you had news?"
"I have this! Upon the northern marches
I heard it blowing dim; River brought it."

He held up great horn cloven,
Wild-ox horn bound with silver, cloven through middle.
"Broken! It will wind no more."

"Yes, I stood beside him;
He blew the horn, but no help came.
No help came, only more Orcs.

"Mightiest may be slain by one arrow;
Boromir was pierced by many.
I saw him no more, know no more --
But honor his memory! He was very valiant.

"He died to save; though he fell, failed,
My gratitude is none the less."

V

"Loud and clear it sounds in the valleys,
Then let all the foes of Gondor flee!"

He blew a blast, the echoes leapt.
From rock to rock, the echoes leapt,
All heard that voice, sprang to their feet.

"Slow should you be to wind horn again,
Until on the borders of your land
And dire need is on you."

"Maybe; but always I let my horn cry.
At setting forth, I let my horn cry,
And though we walk in shadows,
I go not forth as a thief."