Saturday, January 4, 2014

Happy Birthday, Tolkien

My first blog post of 2014 is an shout out homage to one of the most celebrated,
respected and influential writers of all time: J.R.R. Tolkien
Having spent years absorbed in Middle-Earthiness and replaying LoTR theme variations
on the piano, I owe much of my happiness to Tolkien. I still have difficulty identifying each 
dwarf in the Company and I have yet to compile a modest Tengwar vocabulary list, 
but reading LoTR has sent me travelling to sweeping plains and rolling hills, hoping
to find a Shire on a "road [that] goes ever on and on."

I remember reading Dr. Seuss books as a kid and seeing - a few shelves higher up -
my dad's LoTR copies. Only a few years later, after studying The Hobbit in 
English class, did I tentatively flip through the first few pages of The Fellowship in 2010
(wow, that takes me back)  and commence what would turn out to be one of the longest 
- and most significant - reading journeys I've ever undergone. 

I remember the night I openend up The Two Towers for the first time, having
creased the spine of The Fellowship and blogged about it. That was when I
first began to post book quotes (and now I write reviews!). I remember
picking up The Return of the King (and blogging about that too)
and coming across what remains one of my
favourite lines in literature:

There, peeping among the cloud-wrack above a dark tor high up in the mountains, Sam saw a white star twinkle for a while. The beauty of it smote his heart, as he looked up out of the forsaken land, and hope returned to him. For like a shaft, clear and cold, the thought pierced him that in the end the Shadow was only a small and passing thing: there was light and high beauty for ever beyond its reach.

It's so hard to believe that at one point, I loved LoTR and the Jonas brothers
at the same time. Ah, I ditched the latter but the former has never been so important
to me. Thank you, Tolkien.