Today we have a guest writer. Luke Riel is a student of philosophy at Rice University. He began writing poetry after attending Summit Semester and hearing Don Williams speak. He hopes one day to learn to combine philosophy and fiction effectively.
The sunset shines on ruined walls
where Mithril swords and hauberks hung
with harps in long deserted halls,
But e’er and e’er the ocean calls,
the symphonies that Ulmo sung.
The light has passed beneath the trees,
while men still wait in thoughtful gloom
to ponder ancient melodies
that echoed once across the seas
in songs of splendor and of Doom.
How soon the Dúnedain forget
the Children of Ilúvatar!
And fall so soon into regret
through all the passing years; and yet
they still can see the Evenstar.
The morning star Tinúviel
who from e’en Mandos drew a tear
now lives once more: Undómiel!
The image of Gilthoniel;
in her is Elbereth brought near.
While Arwen lives, it still lives on,
the dying beauty of the elves
which from the earth will soon begone.
The kings of men will muse upon
their days before they die themselves.
But we have left it all, we go
to live at last with Elbereth,
forsaking haunts of long ago,
we sail the silver seas, And lo!
We sail fore’er from pain and death.
And few will know the elven art
or long recall their passion strong,
but those who do will live apart:
It saved their souls, but broke their heart
to hear the ancient elven song.
And dim will glow the lights of yore
and fainter grow the memories,
but some with longing in their core
will know not what they listen for,
for it is lost beyond the seas.
Beyond the seas has set our light
and with the Valar there in bliss
awaits a world with no more night.
But if I see with elven sight,
I know one thing, and it is this:
That if I could but give away
this curséd immortality,
then I would leave the earth today
and find perfection’s blesséd ray
and with Ilúvatar be free.
To read the poetry that inspired Luke Riel to write this poem, go to the Lantern Hollow e-store and order Stars through the Clouds: The Collected Poetry of Donald T. Williams (Lynchburg: Lantern Hollow Press, 2011), $15.00 + shipping.