written_leaves: (booktower)
Caged by men, to foe unfearing
The bars give way with courage nearing
In lines of steel her fair face tearing
Sharp, bright-edged Eowyn

An adaptation of Tennyson's Lady of Shallot for Eowyn's story, the idea was started by someone else but caught my fancy so I ran with it. I remember spending the better part of a long Thanksgiving weekend trip with a notebook in hand struggling to work this through - and yes, it's just as long. For what it's worth, I've had a couple people tell me they preferred it to the original, which was a fine compliment indeed.

The Lady Eowyn
In hall of stone above the plains )
written_leaves: (booktower)
A challenge was given to describe something complex in words of only one syllable and no more - and still make sense and preferably rhyme! This poem on the battle of Helm's Deep was the result.

We Won
We had no hope, the foe was strong )
written_leaves: (booktower)
The hunters three, persistently
(Consistent in their tracking feat)
A leaf of Lorien they found,
All pounded down in loam and peat.

An attempt at the patterning of Tolkien's "Errantry" which turned out to be quite a difficult task and increased even more my respect for his grasp of language. The pattern has been turned in this case to the story of the Three Hunters in their run and their encounter with the Rohirrim, emphasis on Gimli.

The Burly Axegrinder
There was a burly axegrinder, a taxminder, a warrior )
written_leaves: (writing)
Chalice tipp'd, crushed lily-bud,
Spilling your gold among the blood,
To lay, a time unseeing.

For Eowyn, both her courageous stand over the dying Theoden and the war she fought in the heart.

Behold the honour of this house! )
Daughter of Kings
A winter-bourne lily, you were lovely but cold )


Dec. 20th, 2009 05:53 pm
written_leaves: (illumination)
You were made for one another,
The mount of a King

A poetic homage to Snowmane, his faithful service and the tragedy of his death and Theoden's.

Surely you were foaled for this very season )


Dec. 20th, 2009 05:38 pm
written_leaves: (booktower)
Kicking off the Return of the King set, here's a quick-paced rhyming piece for Master Merry, esquire of Rohan, or as the man who mistook him for baggage while tripping over him in the dark called him, "Master Bag".

Don't leave me behind! )
written_leaves: (writing)
Evil counsel, sweeter than honey, came to you

A 'moral' poem comparing and contrasting Denethor and Theoden, a Steward and a King facing massive decisions and having to carefully choose whom they listen to.

Counsel of Lies
Two leaders of men in a time of dark war )
written_leaves: (writing)
Three for Helms Deep and just after

For the Battle of Helms Deep I really have very little, but this first one notes Gimli's astonishment at the unacknowledged treasure that the Rohirrim were using as wartime storerooms. The second is a short verse for the uprising of the trees when they set the leftover orcs to better work as fertilizer. Not top quality works, but still worth a quick read.

With them I'm tucking a favorite piece for Theoden and Merry, which happened at Dunharrow rather than Helms Deep but followed shortly after. Their relationship always touched me. Anyone with a passing familiarity with Yeats will recognize it began as an adaptation from "When You are Old and Grey".

Glittering Caves
Wand'ring blind through paradise )
Roaring and silent )
Like a father you were, to him, - for a little while )
written_leaves: (writing)
Eowyn's despairing hidden love for what she could not have, and the final resolution of that hurt. With it I'm placing a character sketch of Grima, a strangely intimate look at the twisted relationship from Theoden's point of view.

Not for Thee
I'll numb my heart to set it free, drown in a blacker day )
Tell me again how the flames of this fire are sufficient light for old eyes...lest I awake )
written_leaves: (writing)
My liege fades under his counselor's hand
Like an old parchment slowly losing its words
Not to the brightness of sunlight
But to the spores and small creeping things
That favor the night.

Another set of two for Rohan - Eomer's despairing attempt at bringing a response from Theoden to deal with the death reaching in over their borders in Meduseld, and with it a sketch of how Gandalf is perceived by the Rohan people and court as a bearer of ill news, as he tries to warn them of the coming war.

Meduseld... A golden cage, a lush death bed scented with herbs and hay )
Stormcrow's Warning
Yes, where Stormcrow flies, war comes close behind=, and grievous the carrion birds surely to follow )
written_leaves: (booktower)

I'm beginning this poetry set for TTT with snapshots of how events were wending along in Rohan, the next stop for (some of) our main characters. Grima Wormtongue (i.e. tongue of smooth deception rather than tongue of worm) is to me a fascinating figure, the corrupted and downfallen nobility that could have been so much more if he had only not turned aside to darkness to meet his personal obsessions. Still, Eowyn had it right when she called him a snake.

With it is a sketch of Eomer in his despairing over the his people and the encroaching corruption and violence he could not seem to hold back.

Soothing as softly perfumed oils...a dragon's cunning )
Do Not Trust to Hope
Too commonplace has death become...do not seek reassurance from me )
written_leaves: (illumination)
Once again, Shakespeare provides a framework that suits the subject matter so very well -

For Eomer, betrayed and exiled by his own Lord's twisted command:
Eomer: Hands of Falsehood )
Dark were my Dreams, of Late )
I Shall Not Now Be Ashamed )
written_leaves: (illumination)
A sweet little verse form

The rondelet is French in origin, a short poem of a single septet (that is, 7 lines long), with only two rhymes, and one refrain, which is repeated. The result is, I think, very like flower petals working their way around a flower, small and soft but with a grace and closure I find lacking in some other short forms, such as haiku.

Outside the gate )
Leaves in the wood )
Longbottom Leaf )
Valiant maid )
In Pippin's eyes )
A silver spoon )
Beyond the sea )
There is no time )
Promised, Master )
Greenest fields )
For September 22nd )
written_leaves: (booktower)
Add one...add one... add one...

A rhopalic is a poetic form / word-play construct in which each succeeding word is one segment longer than the preceding one. It may be with increasing syllables, or (a bit more difficult) by adding one additional letter to each word as you go. In this sense, writing one feels to me more like carefully constructing a puzzle than flowing along with imagery as I usually do.

Merry: I by his dear grace... )
Merry: In planning honesty's conspiracy... )
Theoden: I, an age aged after deceit... )
Eomer: For Rohan, loyalty undivided... )
Thoeden & Eowyn: No battles; unheeded... )
written_leaves: (illumination)
The Ae Freislighe is an Irish syllabic stanza form, and this is an attempt to render one in English:


The Barrow Downs lie in the mist,
The wreathing wisps grasp the stones,
Call me now a pessimist
But this cold reminds of bones.

Long ago they fell beneath,
Dark the shades that crept within,
Heavy gold they shall bequeath,
Entrapping weight to stiffen.

Why did we stop, unthinking?
Now my plaintive cry resounds,
Answered only in clinking,
Far beneath the Barrow Downs.

With it I'm placing a trio in the form of a Burns Stanza, named for the pattern favored by the famous Robert Burns.

Not for Thee )
Eowyn Heals )
Grima's View )
written_leaves: (booktower)
But what's an acrostic for the alphabet?

After briefly considering them, I've decided to spare this journal the limericks... I mean - really... Acrostics, on the other hand, at least take a bit of thought and planning with the letters serving as a useful jumping off point. Some of these are light, others have more time in them.

Acrostically speaking -

Bilbo Baggins )

Shire Tale )

Bill the Pony )

Smeagol / Gollum )

Aragorn Elessar )

Eowyn of Rohan )

Frodo Baggins, Ringbearer )

Gwaihir )

Meriadoc Brandybuck )
written_leaves: (explosives)
Crying 'Fire' in a crowded fic

Title: A Blaze of Glory
Characters: Gandalf, Gimli, Legolas, Aragorn
Wordcount: 1317
Summary: Gandalf is back, but the circumstances are a bit warmer than expected.

A/N: Another 'one-hour challenge' in which we were given a passage from Tolkien and an hour to chase it along. Sometimes the results are a bit unexpected!

It was no wonder that his beard was grey, considering the soot and ash )


written_leaves: (Default)

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