Middle-Earth Fanfiction Awards

Ascension

Author: Fileg

Nominator: unknown

2004 Award Category: Races: Men: Poetry - Third Place

Story Type: Poetry : Length: unknown
Rating: G -- Reason for Rating: N/A
Summary: A terzanelle that questions the futile nature of waiting for redemption.


Review scores are not available for 2004.

Reviewed by: Thundera Tiger -- Score: N/A

The terzanelle is an incredibly difficult form of poetry (for me, anyway) and I'm always in awe when I find one done well. This terzanelle was done well, and it blows me away. The form alone…wow. The advantage of the terzanelle is that it seems to bring things full circle because the first and third lines will be repeated in the end, the latter as the last line and the former two lines above it. Fileg has chosen the perfect lines for this as Denethor acknowledges the ruin around him and yet seems to absolve himself of guilt. But at the same time, he doesn't because he says at one point that he's accepted this bargain and takes responsibility. It's an interesting paradox. Another advantage of the terzanelle is that it ties itself together by forcing other lines to repeat themselves, and if you can pick the proper words for these lines, the poem becomes even more profound. The phrase "an unthanked servant of an absent king" is one of the best lines I've ever heard used to describe the office of Gondor's Steward during the latter half of the Third Age, and this is chosen as the second and fifth line. Beautiful, beautiful language. The meter is another great aspect of this poem. It follows the standard iambic pentameter, but it's not so rigid as to feel that it has been forced into this meter. It fits, certainly, but it wouldn't take much jostling to alter the rhythm, giving a very fluid feel. Incredible use of the terzanelle, and I really can't think of any situation that requires this poem more than Denethor's last moments.

Reviewed by: Avon -- Score: N/A

If I could have but one Tolkien-based fan poem then this would be it. It has stayed with me ever since I first discovered it. I see it unfold in my head like a movie and yet I can read two or three interpretations in most of its lines. I love it all but I think "as a man ascends the steps with ashes on his face" is my favourite line. Maybe it is my religious background that makes it seem so significant but when I read that line I just get blown away. When I first read this I hadn't (for twenty years) read Return of the King so it became my image of Denethor and his death for the year I waited to read it. I love the form of this poem - and I also love that it doesn't need to rely on it. You can enjoy it `A sexy young girl from Bombay…' is the limit of your poetical knowledge.