Eagles to Ithilien

Author: jan-u-wine

Nominator: Antane

2011 Award Category: Poetry: Post Ring War

Story Type: Poetry  ✧  Length: N/A (Non-Fiction or Poetry)

Rating: General  ✧  Reason for Rating: N/A

Summary: "Frodo looked again toward the Mountain. 'No,' he said, 'we shan't need much on that road. And at its end nothing.'" Frodo and Sam's Road *has* ended, but not quite in the dark manner Frodo imagined. There is life, still, waiting to be lived, and joyful awakenings.... Note, the second URL takes you to Mechtild's LJ, where the poem is a companion to her "March 25, 2011" series of screen-caps.

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Reviewed by: Mechtild  ✧  Score: 7

This poem gives a wonderful boon to Frodo: the opportunity to express his gratitude for what Sam has done for him over the bulk of the last, most awful part of the Quest. The reader of the novel has wanted this all along -- that Sam's contribution should be acknowledged, treasured and lauded by the Ring-bearer, who has been so much supported, and, literally, carried by Sam. The reader has hoped that Frodo has felt it, even though, at the most immediate level, he has not been able to feel anything but the hot breath and stench of the Ring, and the desire for it. Surely, though, the reader has reasoned, Frodo must know. Deep down, he must know. It is not just a long intake of sweet breath for Frodo, when he is carried off by the Eagles to awake in Ithilien, finally able to gaze upon and revere Sam. It is a sweet breath for the reader, who loves them both. At last Frodo can feel and express these things, showing he has been restored. This poem makes that breath of sweet air palpable.

Author response: really, there is not much to say in response to this, dear Linda. You've certainly hit the nail upon the head, and beautifully, too. I remember reading this part of the story the first time, and being amazed that Frodo woke first. Upon second thought, it seemed right, it seemed apt, it seemed more than beautiful and not a little past-due, for Frodo to take care of Sam, *just* Sam, and not the world, entire. What great hearts they have, these two.

Reviewed by: Antane  ✧  Score: 4

A sweet celebration of Frodo's love and gratitude for his Sam, now safe at the last, on the other side of the Quest. Love that he has something other than the Ring to consume him, now he can kneel by the one who sustained him and be consumed instead by joy and love and thanksgiving, all too strong for words, but all communicated by the grasp of a hand, by bent knees, by a smile that Sam will wake to. Hobbity love forever!

Author response: thank you, dear Antane.....I always thought that it was wonderful (and very telling) that Frodo woke first, this time. What might his thoughts have been, as he saw the person who'd stood so faithfully by him until the end (and beyond), so wounded that he slept on, even, beyond Frodo's own awakening? How he must have been overcome. Yes, hobbity love forever!

Reviewed by: Dreamflower  ✧  Score: 3

This lovely poem brings to my mind the soaring music of the films as the Eagles bear the Ringbearer's away from their expected end. And yet this is truly a book poem, for it is Frodo's thoughts of Sam's waking that we are shown.

Author response: Dear Dreamflower: I'd never thought, at all, of the poem in relation to the music. Now that you mention it, there are quite similar qualities there. Thank you and I am glad that you enjoyed!

Reviewed by: Darkover  ✧  Score: 2

In this poem, Frodo seems to feel not so much joy as a quiet but massive relief at laying down his burden. Very perceptive, nicely written.

Author response: thank you, Darkover....I think that Frodo likely did not feel joy at this juncture. That, i suspect, would come later, and be rather short-lived, as the knowledge that his desire for the Ring had not ceased, but (horribly) that, though he could never touch It again, yet (*still*) It touched him. He was not Frodo in the moment of the claiming, and never would he be so again. The pity of war: our soldiers may return, healed in body, but the taint of what evils they have known shall ever attach itself to them.