Found Poetry by Linaewen

Contents of this page, in order written:

Something from Boromir
From Faramir
Come Back
Strongest Must Seek a Way
The Sons of Denethor
He Tarries and I Grieve
Worthy Men
Out of Doubt to Hope's End
So Said Denethor
They Escaped in the End
Together through the Ages of the World
Wells of Deep Memory
Darkness Like a Tide
Rekindling of Hearts
Nahar, White in the Sun
Starved Old Pitiable Thing
Lives of the Old Forest


Something from Boromir

From the FOTR chapter "The Council of Elrond"

A man with fair and noble face,
Boromir stood up, tall and proud, before them.
"Give me leave to say more of Gondor;
By our valour are peace and freedom maintained.
Those who shelter behind us give us praise
But little help; still we fight on.
Few know our deeds, guess little their peril.
If we should fail at last, what then?
The power of the Black Land grows,
We are hard beset; in this evil hour
I have come. Long have I wandered, seeking.
The way full of doubt and danger,
I took the journey on myself.
Long I wandered, a hundred and ten days
All alone."

From Faramir

From the words of Faramir to Frodo, in TTT chapter "The Window on the West"

"Alas that ever he went on that errand!
I should have been chosen by my father;
Being the older and the hardier,
He put himself forward, would not be stayed.
Alas for Boromir! What hope have we?
It is long since we had any hope.
We are a failing people, a springless autumn.
War must be, while we defend our lives
Against a destroyer who would devour all;
But I do not love the bright sword
For its sharpness, nor the arrow
For its swiftness, nor the warrior
For his glory.
I love only that which they defend...
Alas that ever he went, alas for Boromir!"

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"Come Back"
from the chapter "The Breaking of the Fellowship"

I have struggled with this Found poem ever since I heard about the challenge; it was a hard one (understandably), but I wanted to do it. I think it finally came out the way I wanted it to, but I had to cheat and do it in two parts to get in everything I wanted! Sorry...see what you think! This is from the confrontation on Amon Hen between Boromir and Frodo...

A strange fate, so small a thing!
We suffer so much fear and doubt;
It is mad not to use it!
Use the power of the Enemy against him!
True-hearted Men, they will not be corrupted;
The fearless, the ruthless, these will achieve victory.
(His fair and pleasant face hideously changed)
We do not desire the power of wizard-lords,
Only strength to defend ourselves, a just cause!
What could not warrior do in this hour?
What could not Aragorn do? Or Boromir:
A mighty king, benevolent and wise!
I do not desire to keep it;
Lend me the Ring!
(A raging fire was in his eyes)

And they tell us to throw it away!
A halfling should walk blindly into Mordor, offer
Every chance of recapturing it! Folly!
How it angers me! Fool! Obstinate fool!
Running willfully to death and ruining our cause.
Curse you and all halflings to death, darkness!
(His fair and pleasant face hideously changed)
He fell sprawling and lay upon his face,
Still as if his own curse had struck.
Suddenly he wept,
Passed hand over eyes, dashing away tears;
What have I said? What have I done?
A madness took me, but it has passed;
Come back! Come back!
He wept.

Of course, the poem is about snow AND Boromir, but you probably expected that. This is from a passage in FOTR "The Ring Goes South", one of my absolutely favorite Boromir passages. Here we see him in his element, not thinking about Gondor, not thinking about the Ring, just worrying about the hobbits, doing what he does best to save his friends. In FOTR, Boromir is not given a lot of character development, but in this passage we see more of him -- courageous, sensible, and even humorous -- than in most parts of the book. The poem is only an abbreviated look at the rescue in the snow, and hardly does it justice.

Strongest Must Seek a Way

Snow did not relent, wind blew louder;
"This will be the death of the halflings!
Come, Master Peregrine! Cling to my back.
I am weary, but still have strength left."

He lifted the hobbit, strode forward.
Pippin marvelled at his strength; no other tool
Than his great limbs, thrusting snow aside.

Broad, heavier in build, Boromir led the way;
Snow breast-high, soon toiling heavily.
Often Boromir seemed to be swimming,
Burrowing with great arms, rather than walking.

Great drift, twice the height of Boromir;
Passage had been beaten through the middle.
Lesser men with spades might have served better,
But happily, Caradhras has forgotten doughty Men.

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As I anticipate the upcoming Extended Edition of TTT and read about Minas Tirith and warfare in Gondor, my mind is full of thoughts of Denethor and his sons. My inkling Muse is escaping me, no matter how I pursue it, but inspiration came in the form of a found poem from the passage 'The Stewards' in Appendix A of ROTK.

The Sons of Denethor

Boromir, fearless and strong; delighting chiefly in arms,
Caring little for lore. Beloved by his father,
Like him in face, pride, but little else.

Faramir the younger, like him in looks,
But otherwise in mind. He read hearts
As shrewdly as his father; but was moved
Sooner to pity than to scorn.
Gentle in bearing, lover of lore and music,
His courage was judged less than his brother's;
But it was not so.

Between the brothers there was great love;
No jealousy or rivalry for father's favor,
No jealousy or rivalry for praise of men.
To Faramir, not possible any could rival Boromir,
Heir, Captain. It proved otherwise at the test.

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He Tarries and I Grieve

In honor of the day when Boromir took his road, a lament based on the Lament for Boromir found in "The Departure of Boromir" (TTT)


What news, O wandering wind?
From the West what news do you bring?
Have you seen Boromir the Tall?
He tarries and I grieve.

The West Wind about the walls goes;
'Over waters grey I saw him ride,
In empty lands, I saw him walk,
Until he passed away into the shadows.
I saw him then no more.
The North Wind may have heard the horn
Of the son of Denethor.'

O Boromir!
I looked afar from the high walls,
But from empty lands you came not,
And I grieve.

~~~~

What news, O sighing wind?
What news from the South do you bring?
Where now is Boromir the Fair?
He tarries and I grieve.

The South Wind at the gate moans,
'Ask not of me where he doth dwell --
So many bones on shores under stormy sky;
So many have passed down Anduin
To find the flowing Sea.
Ask of the North Wind news
Of them the North Wind sends to me.'

O Boromir!
Beyond the gate the seaward road runs,
But with the wailing gulls you came not,
And I grieve.

~~~~

What news, O mighty wind?
What news from the North do you bring?
Boromir the Bold is long away;
He tarries and I grieve.

North Wind rides, about the tower horn calls.
'I heard his cry beneath Amon Hen,
There many foes he fought.
Cloven shield, broken sword to water they brought,
So proud, so fair, limbs laid to rest;
Upon its breast Rauros bore him.'

O Boromir!
The Tower Guard shall ever gaze northward
To Rauros until end of days.

O Boromir!
You came not, and I grieve.

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Worthy Men -- A Found Poem (txt) ... Linaewen ... 07.10-10:17
This is a found poem in two sections -- words of praise from the mouths of two men who respected one another, and who may even have met at one time and been friends.

The first section was spoken at the Council of Elrond, in response to Aragorn's dismay that the Rohirrim were giving a tribute of horses to Sauron; the second was spoken upon the fields of Rohan, at the meeting of the Three Hunters with the Riders of Rohan.

Worthy Men

From the mouth of Boromir, words of praise in defense of the Rohirrim:

I know the Men of Rohan, our allies;
True and valiant, dwelling in lands we gave
Long ago.
Rohan beset, who knows what you will find
If ever you return?
Not this, that they buy lives with horses.
They love their horses next to their kin;
The horses of the Riddermark come from fields
Far from Shadow; their race descended
As that of their masters, from free days
Of old.
The Men of Rohan love their horses;
True and valiant, our allies.

~~~

From the mouth of Eomer, words of praise and regret for Boromir son of Gondor:

Your news is all of woe! Boromir slain;
We had no word of this grief.
Great harm is this death to Minas Tirith;
Great harm is this death to us all.
A worthy man! All spoke his praise.
A great captain of his people
Ever in the wars on the East-border;
He came seldom to the Mark.
I have seen him; he seemed
more like the swift sons of Eorl
Than the grave Men of Gondor.
We shall not forsake Gondor, so say I;
While they fight we shall aid them.
Great harm is this death to us all.

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While I may have taken a few liberties with the number of stanzas for this Found Poem, it is otherwise appropriate.

Passages where I "found" my poem are taken from throughout the LOTR trilogy, in an attempt to show Aragorn's progression from obscurity to reknown, and from doubt to hope.

Out of Doubt to Hope's End

Lean face, weather-stained cloak --
What have you to do with Minas Tirith?

Descended through many fathers from Isildur Elendil's son,
Aragorn son of Arathorn, Chief of the Dunedain,
Few are now left of that folk.
Here is the Sword that was Broken!

The Sword of Elendil a help beyond hope,
If such could return out of the shadow;
If hand that wields inherited not heirloom only
But the sinews of the Kings of Men.

Who can tell? said Aragorn. Who can tell?

~~~~~

You do not yet know what to do.
Boats may make journey less toilsome,
Yet they will not give counsel.

Gift of boats comforted, no need to decide.
Long they debated, Aragorn divided in mind.
His plan? To go with Boromir, deliver Gondor;
But the burden of Gandalf laid on him --
He could not forsake the Ring.

I go alone, if need be, said Boromir.

~~~~~

Fear not!
Proud and erect, dark hair blowing:
A king returning from exile to his land.
Isildur's heir has naught to dread!

Then light of eyes faded, spoke to himself.
How my heart yearns! Whither shall I go?
Would that Gandalf were here! My heart yearns
For Minas Anor, the walls of my city!

Whither now shall I go?

~~~~~

Boromir did not speak again.

He knelt, bent with weeping, clasping Boromir's hand.
Alas! A bitter end, the Company in ruin.
It is I that have failed -- vain Gandalf's trust!
What shall I do now? All gone amiss!
What is to be done now?
May I make right choice, change evil fate.

The Company has played its part.

~~~~~

Come! Who are you? Whom do you serve?

Vision of majesty of the kings of stone,
White flame on brows like shining crown.
I serve no man -- Aragorn son of Arathorn,
Elessar, Elfstone, Dunadan, heir of Isildur of Gondor.
Here is Sword Broken and forged again!
Will you aid me or thwart -- choose swiftly!

Dreams and legends spring to life --
What brings you? What doom do you bring?

The doom of choice.

~~~~~

Strider, or I'm still asleep!

They knew him, changed as he was,
High, glad of face, kingly lord of Men.
A long way from Bree, is it not?
You did not like the look of me.
A long way for us all!

Revealed now for the first time,
Tall as the sea-kings, ancient of days
In flower of manhood; wisdom upon brow,
Healing in his hands, light about him.

In this place I will abide
Unto the ending of the world.

Behold the King!

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This Found Poem is an attempt to understand Denethor through his own words as written by Tolkien. The title and the stanzas (in the order presented) are from passages found in FOTR's "The Council of Elrond" -- where Denethor's words are reported by Gandalf to the Council -- and ROTK's "Minas Tirith" and "The Pyre of Denethor."

So Said Denethor -- A Found Poem

To me what was is less dark
Than what is to come --
That is my care.
You will find naught
That is not well known to me,
Master of the lore of this city.

You will find naught
unless you have more skill
even than Saruman, who studied here long.
What was is less dark
than what is to come.

~~~~~

Dark is indeed the hour; at such times
you are wont to come, Mithrandir.
Though all signs forebode the doom of Gondor,
Less now to me that darkness
Than my own darkness.
You bring one who saw my son die.
My Boromir! Now we have need of you.

Mithrandir! Help and counsel
you deal out according to your own designs.
The Lord of Gondor not to be made the tool
of other men's purposes, however worthy.
No purpose higher than the good of Gondor;
The rule of Gondor mine; no other man's,
unless the king should come again.

~~~~~

Pride and despair!
The eyes of the White Tower blind? Nay!
Thy hope is but ignorance. Vanity!
For a little space, triumph -- for a day.
But against the Power that arises
there is no victory. All the East moving.
The wind of thy hope cheats thee.
The West has failed -- time to depart
for all who would not be slaves.

I would be Lord in peace;
leave my chair to a son after me --
his own master and no wizard's pupil.
But if doom denies, I will have naught --
neither life diminished, love halved, nor honour abated.

Time to depart, who would not be slaves.

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It was fascinating to reread LOTR recently, and discover that Gandalf uses the same phrase -- "he escaped in the end" -- to refer to two very different people who experienced the lure of the Ring of Power. Though their responses to that Ring differed greatly, and they both needed help to overcome it -- Bilbo with the help of Gandalf's urging and his own good hobbit sense, and Boromir, with the help of Merry and Pippin's peril and his sorrow at what he had done to Frodo -- ultimately it was the same result for both of them: Bilbo and Boromir escaped in the end.

THEY ESCAPED IN THE END -- A Found Poem*

What a pity!

He had a chance, what a pity
Bilbo did not stab that vile creature!
Pity stayed his hand, and mercy
Not to strike without need.
He took little hurt, escaped in the end.

What a trial!

For such a man, a sore trial;
A warrior and a lord of men
In peril -- poor Boromir!
But he escaped in the end.
He died well, may he sleep in peace.

Linaewen

*Some liberties were taken to make the comparisons, but only tiny ones. The phrases were taken from the chapters Shadow of the Past, The White Rider, and The Seige of Gondor.
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Together Through Ages of the World          

A found poem taken from a passage in FOTR, "The Mirror of Galadriel"


Your quest is known to us;
Not in vain will it prove, seeking aid.

The Lord of the Galadhrim, wisest of Elves,
Giver of gifts beyond the power of kings,
Since days of dawn dwelt in the West --
And I with him years uncounted.

Ere the fall of Nargothrond or Gondolin
I passed over the mountains;
Together through ages of the world
We have fought the long defeat.
- Linaewen
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A found poem from "The Mirror of Galadriel" chapter of FOTR. I love Celeborn and Galadriel best when they are together!

Wells of Deep Memory

Canopied by living bough there sat,
Side by side,
Celeborn and Galadriel.

Very tall they were,
The Lady no less than the Lord;
They were grave and beautiful,
Clad wholly in white.
Hair of the Lady, deep gold;
Hair of the Lord, silver long and bright.

No sign of age,
Unless in depths of eyes --
Keen as lances in starlight,
Profound wells of deep memory.

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This Found poem is taken from passages in "The Tower of Cirith Ungol" (ROTK).

Darkness Like a Tide

Minutes were precious, but one by one escaped --
He could do nothing! Longed only for master,
One sight of face, one touch of hand.

Weary and defeated, he bowed head into hands --
Quiet, horribly quiet!
He felt the darkness cover like a tide.

At vain end of long journey and grief,
Moved by thought, Sam began to sing.
Thin and quavering, voice forlorn and weary,
Childish tunes, fleeting glimpses of home.

Then new strength rose, voice rang out,
Words came unbidden --
"I will not say the Day is done,
nor bid the Stars farewell."


Faint voice answering, it was Frodo.

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Rekindling of Hearts
From a passage in LoTR, The Tale of Years:

Círdan saw further and deeper,
Further and deeper than any other in Middle-earth;
At the Grey Havens he welcomed Mithrandir,
Knowing whence he came, whither he would return.

"Take this ring, Master -- the Ring of Fire.
It will support you in weariness,
The weariness you have taken upon yourself.
Rekindle hearts in a world that grows chill.
Your labours, heavy -- but it will support you.
Rekindle hearts, Ring of Fire!"

"As for me, my heart is with the Sea.
I dwell by the grey shores
Until the last ship sails.
I will await you."

Círdan saw further and deeper than any other.

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Nahar, White in the Sun -- A found poem taken from passages in The Silmarillion

Oromë is a mighty lord, a hunter;
He delights in horses and in hounds.
Nahar his horse, white in the sun,
Shining silver at night.
Valaróma his great horn, sound like the Sun,
Like the upgoing of the Sun in scarlet,
Sheer lightning cleaving clouds.

In darkness of unlit forests Oromë would ride;
Mighty hunter with spear and bow
Pursuing fell creatures of Melkor.
White horse Nahar shone like silver,
Silver in the shadows Nahar shone.
Sleeping earth trembled at beat of golden hooves,
Sound the Valaróma! Mountains echoed, shadows fled,
Melkor himself quailed in Utumno, foreboding wrath.

***

Copy and paste this link into the address bar of your browser to see a beautiful piece of art by Anke Eissman featuring Oromë and Nahar:

http://anke.edoras-art.de/cgi-bin/silm.pl?file=orome_72.jpg

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This poem was 'found' in a passage in the chapter, "The Stairs of Cirth Ungol" in the book The Two Towers.

Old starved pitiable thing...

A fleeting moment, an old weary hobbit,
Shrunken by years, carried far beyond his time.

Crawling, creeping, lean hungry face;
Eyes dim and grey, old and tired.
A spasm of pain, and he turned away,
Engaged in some interior debate.
The gleam faded from his eyes, old, tired.

Slowly putting out a trembling hand, he touched;
Cautiously touched Frodo's knee, the touch a caress.
A fleeting moment, an old weary hobbit,
Shrunken by years, carried far beyond his time;
Beyond friends and kin,
Beyond fields and streams of youth.

Old starved pitiable thing...


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This poem was "found" in FotR, in the chapter entitled In the House of Tom Bombadil, where Tom is telling the hobbits more about the Old Forest than they care to know!

Lives of the Old Forest

Lives of the Forest they began to understand;
Indeed, strangers where all other things at home.
Words laid bare the hearts of trees,
Thoughts dark and strange, filled with hatred --
Hatred of things that go free; destroyers, usurpers.

Old Forest, ancient; survivor of vast forgotten woods.
There lived yet, ageing no quicker than hills,
Fathers of the fathers of trees, remembering...
Remembering times when they were lords.

Countless years filled them with pride,
Rooted wisdom and malice.
Heart rotten, but strength green.

Lives of the Forest, dark and strange,
Filled with hatred of things that go free.