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Mt. Doom river of fire

For the Anniversary of March 25: Jan's 'The Plea of the Evenstar' , art by Bandwench and Alan Lee.

Posted on 2012.03.25 at 08:12


Lavender Took
lavendertook at 2012-03-29 06:17 (UTC) (Link)
Oh, such an exquisite poem! This may be the finest of the poems I have read of Jan's yet. Every word is perfect. Such a brilliant entreaty--so hard driven, from truths so bitterly won, and heart so full of love to a heart equally so full, which will well in gratitude with the armament of words she bestows on him to wield fiercely against any of the higher powers that would oppose him. How great must have been Gandalf's admiration for this queen of two peoples upon receiving this entreaty.

I love how Jan illustrates the majesty of Arwen's intellect and wisdom that Tolkien outlines in that letter, along with the great compassion she is most known for. I love her unusual use of the words, "depends", "farewell", and "remaining". Without stumping or distancing the reader, it gives the sense of an alien use of the language to befit Elven difference and antiquity. Just gorgeous.

And what a complementary frame you fashion for Jan's jewel. I agree that is Frodo in Bandwench's lovely manip and not Elijah. And that pic of Alan Lee's is so perfect for the Arwen speaking here--that face does speak those words as she rides along Belfalas. It's so wonderful that it's Alan Lee's and he made it to illustrate another character and it's so perfect here. Such a beautiful piece you wove together.

I do love the Letters so. I poured over them when I was 17 and again after the film brought me back to the trilogy 22 years later. I don't remember that passage and I don't know why it didn't stick with me--it tells us so much about Arwen and so deepens her character. It's definitely time for a reread for me. That passage sure cries out for fanfic embroidery, and Jan and you gave us such a fittingly lovely one.

You know, it makes me think that maybe this is the passage that inspired Boyens, Walsh, and PJ to add the unfortunate plot twist of Arwen's fate being tied to the ring, but how poorly they plopped it onto their canvas, deciding it needed no blotting. Tolkien's outline here deserved such better treatment, as did the grand work they themselves wrought--I'm glad you and Jan fixed that.

Lovely--thank you both and I hope you had a happy Tolkien reading Day.

mechtild at 2012-03-29 12:33 (UTC) (Link)
Lavender, what a beautiful, beautiful response to the piece. Thank you so much for your complex thoughts and the time you took to express them.

How great must have been Gandalf's admiration for this queen of two peoples upon receiving this entreaty.

Yes. And his love. These are two people who understand love and compassion: their burden, their gift. Think of Gandalf sponsoring Frodo as Ring-bearer. To think a hobbit the best in the Shire, to love him, yet let him go on a journey of sacrifice and probable personal ruin.... Should he save the one but let the rest fall? Or must he let that one go and do his appointed task, whatever the end, probably dark? Compassion and love, both gift and burden. Arwen, if she only intimates what will be her final experiences of mortal life, show how well she already knows the gift and burden of these feelings. The Elves can seem cold, hard in the tales, but never Arwen. A true heir of Luthien Tinuviel.

I think it's one of Jan's best, too, although there are many, many 'bests', it's hard to choose!

I hadn't thought about Philippa getting "Arwen's fate is tied to that of the Ring" from this. If not that, then the "What grace is given me, let it pass to him, let him be spared," what she said at the Ford. I know most viewers had a fit about the Ford because it took away yet another opportunity for Frodo to show what he was made of and capable of, but I thought that one moment had the ring of authenticity. Maybe because it referred back to this.
jan_u_wine at 2012-03-31 18:38 (UTC) (Link)
wow, LT. I am floored by this comment. Firstly, I am so glad that you enjoyed the poem and think it so *worthy*. I'm not sure that it is my best, but that is a very flattering thing, indeed.

to be honest, I have not written much lately, so this was a particular challenge, being as I rarely write in Arwen's "voice". But it also was a breath of fresh air, so to speak, making me think in different patterns than the ones associated with Frodo. I'm glad that it was successful!

(oddly enough, i think in words like "depends" (in its Olde English style meaning). I'm an strange duck, and that's a fact)

(I am at the library with only 3 minutes to do this, so if it seems rushed, you'll know why....)

I think that most of the credit and huzzahs for the beauty of this post must go to Mechtild. it was her idea for me to pursue a different voice and it is she who "sets" the 'stone' of the poem into the beautiful frame of her own words and pictures.

Thank you, Mechtild, and thank you, LT, for the wonderful praise. I hope to be able to comment more when i have a computer, lol!
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