Wednesday, January 03, 2007
January 3, 1892 - September 2, 1973
I don't believe that Tolkien, who was politically conservative and a devout Catholic, would have shared my political or personal philosophies, but nevertheless over the many years I have been reading him (over 35 years now since I first read The Lord of the Rings) I have derived a great deal of pleasure, and comfort, from his writing -- and I believe I share that with many others on my side of the cultural divide.
'A great Shadow has departed,' said Gandalf, and then he laughed, and the sound was like music, or like water in a parched land; and as he listened the thought came to Sam that he had not heard laughter, the pure sound of merriment, for days upon days without count. It fell upon his ears like the echo of all the joys he had ever known.It's hard to feel that kind of unbridled joy when all around you the world is going to hell in a handbasket, when you can see every day the effects of the mistakes, incompetence, corruption and malfeasance of our rulers -- it's put a real damper on life, in my experience. Nevertheless, throughout this continuing crisis, Tolkien has been there as a source of both inspiration and consolation.
Happy birthday, and thank you, Professor Tolkien. Aiya meldomelin nolmo! Ed Fitzgerald | 1/03/2007 04:40:00 PM | | | del.icio.us | GO: TOP OF HOME PAGE