The Servant's Song

Through a bright crack
In a kitchen door
Came in revelation.

Just a barefoot army
Of scullions and turnspits
No orcs for us to fight.

Born to hew wood
And draw water
And dream.

Quick! Quick!
An Elf! Honoured guest
At the high table.

Up the dark stairs
Into the gallery.
Lift the latch and wonder.

A bright head restless,
A peregrine among pigeons
No more at ease than we are.

Crouching fearful in the dark,
Watching. Beside the Elf
The dwarf, bearing his Lady’s gold.

'What are you doing here?
Back to the kitchens
Or feel the rod across your backs.'

For us only the Fellowship
Of pots and pans and yet
The Elves live forever.

Yet now they are gone
And the warriors too
Keen swords and bright grey eyes.

Only their songs remain,
Half-heard in the courtyard
It is the end of the legend.

But while the well-fed sleep
From mean beds we creep,
And on the walls their vigil keep.

In the frosty moonlight
Their battles live again
Remembered by the forgotten.

Under the great trees
Singing in starlight
We will be Elves.

- Varda