Middle-Earth Fanfiction Awards

Steward's Trumpets

Author: Branwyn (Lady Branwyn)
Nominator: Branwyn (Lady Branwyn)
2008 Award Category: Times: Late Third Age: Gondor Drabbles

Story Type: Fixed-Length Ficlet : Length: True Drabble
Rating: General -- Reason for Rating: N/A
Summary: Written for the "Renewal" challenge at Tolkien_weekly Unsure of what he is seeking, Faramir returns to the scene of his father's death.


Reviewed by: Imhiriel -- Score: 7

Beautifully and very effectively written. The drabble begins with the picture of ruins and lifelessness, and you almost feel a pall of dust and silence and sadness descending over Faramir as you read. And then the melancholy is lifted with the unexpected discovery of green freshness and defiant life reclaiming its place. The symbolism of the plants, their shapes and their names are particularly poignant: they represent both a new beginning while at the same time embracing - literally - the old memories. And it is as if the last words leave a lingering echo - as you are reminded of the glory and pride of the line (in both film and book): ["the clear ringing of silver trumpets"]. I like it that it seems as if Faramir was drawn to the place without conscious volition, as if he was *meant* to come and see these signs of renewal. And judging from the first half of the drabble, it seems he very much needed them, as he seems adrift and strangely bereft, detached from the renewal that is going on around him.

Reviewed by: Raksha the Demon -- Score: 6

Sigh. Why can't I write exquisite little drabbles like this? Branwyn can; and make it look easy, natural, the words just flowing out like a brook flowing between flowery banks. This is an inspired notion, Faramir facing the scene of his father's horrible death, the death his father ordered for him as well, in the ruin of the House of the Stewards, and finding signs of spring. Beautiful descriptions of the ivy and flowers, from a writer who knows how to produce description so well that the reader barely notices something is actually being described, the described objects are just there, skilfully inserted into the narrative. The sense of nature's renewal of desolation comes across strongly in the atmosphere and specifics. And the whole thing is quite Tolkienesque - I know that the Prof would have approved this piece!

Reviewed by: Linda Hoyland -- Score: 3

What a lovely heart warming moment which must help ease Faramir's grief. How fitting that "Steward's Trumpets" should grow in the ruins,almost as if nature herself is leaving a tribute.Moments like this are very healing.

Reviewed by: Nancy Brooke -- Score: 3

What is a weed, but a plant whose virtue has been forgotten? How nice, and appropriate, that Faramir might find solace in the natural world's endurance, and clever writing to take something ordinary in our world, and translate it into something special in Tolkien's.

Reviewed by: Larner -- Score: 3

There were the dead had been wont to lie, amidst the wreckage of the Stewards' House, Faramir finds a sign of hope for life as he looks on white flowers and green vines.... The lightening of Faramir's grief is well conveyed along with the pleasure and wonder of finding this sign of life continuing there amidst the fallen and blackened stones.

Reviewed by: Dwimordene -- Score: 3

Writers who know how to use specific flowers and trees for symbolic effect leave me jealous. The devastation of the tomb was beautifully described: [As jagged as an eggshell, the broken dome rose before him]. It's the only phrase devoted to the ruins, but it works like a charm. The juxtaposition of renewal and this destroyed place, coming together in the flowers was just beautiful. Well done!

Reviewed by: Avon -- Score: 2

That's very sweet - such a nice way to show renewal. I loved the description of the flowers - it was a great word picture.

Reviewed by: nancylea -- Score: 1

healing and not maudilin at all, peace be unto him