The Fairest Flower

Author: jan-u-wine

Nominator: Antane

2011 Award Category: Poetry: Post Ring War - First Place

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

Rating: General  ✧  Reason for Rating: N/A

Summary: 1421....a year which brought ever-increasing dark and despair to the life of Frodo Baggins. Except for one elven-fair blossom.......

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Reviewed by: Mechtild  ✧  Score: 7

It's March 25, two years after the fall of the Dark Tower. Frodo emerges from a warm nest of comforters and bedding to find things not quite looked after - fire not lit, tea not steaming, no sounds and smells of breakfasting, no loaves cooling on the sill -- the familiar signs of life and comfort at Bag End with the Gamgees. Frodo makes do with left-overs, still good, and wanders out. In the morning sun of the garden, Frodo, ruminating, turns to greet Sam who holds in his arms the newest baby to be born in Bag End, Sam and Rosie's first, Elanor, the star-flower child. Frodo's thoughts about the child of his most beloved friend, born on the anniversary of the greatest day in Middle-earth's more recent history, are a mix of delight and solemnity, the common and the sublime. Just as the baby girl is a child of the Shire, a land and people simple and earthy, yet bearer of blessings of the Golden Wood and its Lady, great and high, and, by association, the blessings of the even higher and greater One she serves.

Author response: Dear Linda.....once again, I feel that your words are easily as lovely as the ones of the poem. Although I do like most all of the poems that I've written, there are those that have a special place in my heart. I remember wrestling a bit with this one, but, in the end, it is, without any reservations, beautiful to me. Normally, I'd long-windedly tell you the story behind the poem....but there isn't one, not really. Just a feeling of love. And that is the greatest story of all, isn't it? Thank you, thank you!

Reviewed by: Antane  ✧  Score: 3

What a sweet celebration of blessed joy as Frodo holds Elanor for the first time, real enough to touch and see and feel the love and happiness of proud father and uncle for this glorious moment, his heartbrother's firstborn.

Author response: Dear Antane, I am so glad that you enjoyed it. There are certain pieces that are more close to my heart than others (though all, i should say, are close, and loved!) and this is surely one of them. I can't help but think that Elle was a blessing to Frodo, in the midst of his well as to Samwise. Thank you again!

Reviewed by: Kara's Aunty  ✧  Score: 3

More tremendous poetry from the talented pen (or keyboard) of jan-u-wine. Frodo's love for his niece fairly resonates from the screen, and I find myself deeply touched by how instant, absolute and undemanding it is. Simply perfect.

Author response: Dear KA: thank you so much again! "undemanding"....what an interesting word to use in relation to Frodo's reaction to the birth of Elanor....but you are quite right, I think. When I think of him, at this time of his life, so soon to depart ME forever, the main.....feeling that comes across is just that: undemanding, as if he would ask no more of his world. Somehow, that makes the acceptance of good and glorious things that much more beautiful. thank you again!

Reviewed by: Darkover  ✧  Score: 3

A beautifully descriptive poem about how Frodo's suffering continued even after the destruction of the Ring, and how the arrival of Sam's firstborn child eased Frodo's suffering and filled him with a desire to live once again. According to canon, Frodo did come up with the idea for the little girl's name, so this poem is accurate as well as moving.

Author response: Dear Darkover, thank you so much. I am very glad you enjoy the poem! (and may I wish you a very Happy New Year....t'is verra close now!)

Reviewed by: Dreamflower  ✧  Score: 2

Such beautifully heartbreaking imagery, as Frodo wakes from his spring anniversary to the news of new life. Like all of jan-u-wine's poetry, it feels very intimate.

Author response: "intimate". Yes, I think many f/f writers feel that they are in that place, and most especially so writers of LOTR fiction. The characters of LOTR are so very human that they cry out for, and lend themselves to, such personal snapshots of such telling moments in their lives. Thank you, Dreamflower. I'm very happy that you liked it!