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Reflections from the Paradise of Elves  by Bodkin 7 Review(s)
Jay of LasgalenReviewed Chapter: 66 on 7/8/2005
Legolas as the piper at the gates of dawn is a rather melancholy image. But he's right - it should not be forgotten. That's reinforced by Elrohir's memory of Imladris at the end - the empty halls and dead leaves - against his description of the valley he remembers from childhood.

And, amongst the philosophy, I like Elrohir's 'dignified' description of his brother as orc-brain. That's a very E2 moment.


Author Reply: I think immortality must lend itself to a touch of melancholy - tout change, tout passe - except for the elves. The sheer weight of years and memory must be enormous - even worse for those, like Celeborn and Galadriel and Elrond, whose memories stretch back further and who have lost even more. But perhaps their - duty? need? - is to remember the joy rather than the sorrow. Hard, though.

They're not into romantic Byronic melancholy though. Laughter and teasing and being rude to each other is part of how they show love and support.

RedheredhReviewed Chapter: 66 on 7/2/2005
"...miss the presence of orcs..." ????! Poor Legolas really is in a nostalgic funk, ain't he! But, they all understand what he means. There is are few of the exciting life and death challenges they faced in Ennor. Now, I am scared that they will come up with one... Not that scared. ;)

Maybe the elves of Ennor should hold an offical wake since both really do work better in company.

'Nother good episode.

Author Reply: And yet . . . Orcs by themselves are essentially unmissable, I would think, but part of what they represent is - youth? adventure? risk? challenge? home? People often live in untenable positions - on the slopes of volcanoes, or in the middle of war zones - because that's their home.

Intellectually they know they are happy and better off here with their families in an beautiful land of peace and plenty - but Arda is their home. I don't think they will deliberately risk their lives in the BR - they are grown up now after all. But many of the best songs are songs of mourning. The trouble with an official wake would probably be that everyone was mourning something different.

Thank you - I'm glad you liked it. I hope they're a bit more cheerful and upbeat in the next one or two!

The KarenatorReviewed Chapter: 66 on 6/30/2005
Oh, this was lovely, Bodkin.

I loved this line: ‘Well – he is both of those. But sometimes he accidentally lets slip the fact that he is deeper than that.’ This tells us so much about Legolas. I think we all know this, but still, it's nice that E2 recognize how deep their friend is.

‘When I mourn the passing of Imladris, it is not the empty halls that I recall, in which the stirring of dried leaves sounded like the footsteps of the departed, but the valley of our youth – full of laughter and song, with busy people leading purposeful lives.’ He paused a moment in recollection. ‘The sun always shines in memory,’ he said. This is such an evocative image. "...dried leaves sounded like the footsteps of the departed." Lovely.

I like the slow pace and the feeling of reflection. When I read it, I found it sad, but very calming. The close relationship of these three is such a pleasure to read. always.


Author Reply: Thank you. It's easy to be rather superficial with Legolas. Well, actually, with the twins, too. So it's rather fun to suggest lots of layers.

Legolas sailed at the end, really - over a century into the Fourth Age, but his outpost in Ithilien was fairly new and he had other interests - and, come to that, Lasgalen revived into a final burst of elven life in the wake of Dol Guldur's destruction - so I don't know if he realised quite how close to their end the elves were. The twins, however, left it later - and they know exactly how it was when Imladris was abandoned and Lothlorien decayed and I think they are still close enough to it to be . . less sentimental about what they left behind. At least at the moment. But they do understand each other better than pretty much anyone else can.

It's too easy to include sad and reflective moments like this - they need some joy. Perhaps next time.

elliskaReviewed Chapter: 66 on 6/30/2005
I love these contemplative ones, but in this one, a particular line really caught my attention: ‘The sun always shines in memory,’ he said.

In context with Elrohir's memories (the stirring of dried leaves sounded like the footsteps of the departed, but the valley of our youth – full of laughter and song, with busy people leading purposeful lives.) that really touched me. It is really very true. Last year I visited the place where I grew up and I was amazed at how changed it was and how that made me feel. You are really good at catching little things that we can all identify with...universal experiences.

And I love that Legolas was ready with cups for the twins too. A great touch there at the end. I love these.

Author Reply: It does, too. Otherwise how come all the summers of childhood were glorious?

E2 are still closer to the reality - and remember better what it was like at the end, but Legolas has had several extra centuries to sentimentalise the past. (Probably as well, since late Mirkwood probably needs more sentimentalising.)

My mother still lives where I grew up - but I went back to my old school once for a reunion (on its 50th anniversary or something) and it was small - it seemed so enormous when I started there. And yet some things - the tennis courts, the panelling in the hall, the front door were just the same - and the maple tree out the front was just exactly as it was.

Yes, Legolas knew they'd be along - he'd do the same for them. And yet I don't really see them as having been bosom buddies in Arda - too far apart in age and experience. Until Aragorn became Elessar and they began to have more in common.

I love writing these. One of them only has to say something and they just flow!

daw the minstrelReviewed Chapter: 66 on 6/30/2005
I can see how elves in Valinor would miss ME, especially those who were born in ME. It's what they grew up with and anything else has to feel a little foreign.

Author Reply: Back in the dim and distant past, before I was even a twinkle, my mother served in the WRNS (Women's Royal Naval Service) in WW2 - and in late 1944 she sailed to Australia to help win the Pacific War. Which is a long way round to say that loads of the Australians who were delighted to have these girls visit trailed 'home'. Often places they hadn't seen for half a lifetime or more. And the home of your youth often has a rather beautified romanticism about it.

E2L know it wasn't like that - some of the time at least - but time's passing has glossed up the good bits and pushed some of the worst under the turf. (I'd have said carpet, but hey, they're elves. They probably don't go for wall to wall.)

Rose SaredReviewed Chapter: 66 on 6/30/2005
Awww, for neither the first nor the last time. I do like these tales. Of course legolas would mourn his old home, a goodly part of him was left behind there, and the twins also. Love the fact he brought enough goblets. sigh. Wish I could write this stuff.

Author Reply: Thank you - I'm so glad you like them. Legolas would mourn for the trees of his youth - and then there are of all the other lost havens of the elves and those who passed into Namo's hands and have not returned. To be an elf is to be melancholy, I would think. A la recherche du temps perdu.

They know each other too well not to know that the others would turn up in support if they were anywhere nearby.

I like the stuff you write! And I'm looking forward to more of it.

lwarrenReviewed Chapter: 66 on 6/30/2005
Music of the heart deserves to be shared with friends of the heart - really no one else would do for these three who have shared so much history between them. I was just checking for updates before retiring (it's 2:00 am here!) and found this little melancholy jewel! Now I'll never get to sleep for listening for pipe music and elven song, Bodkin! LOL Once again, thank you for writing these small pearls - they are collecting into quite a beautiful string, I think!


Author Reply: Melancholy must be one of the down sides of immortality, I should think. So much passes and will never come again - at least amongst those elves to whom Arda was home.

My imagination has Legolas playing Debussy, I think. It just seems to have an elven quality to it. (In fact - try and listen to the Debussy Arabesque.)

I love writing these - and I'm so pleased that you enjoy them.

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