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The Empty Shell - by Larner

Author: Larner
Title: The Empty Shell
Rating: PG
Theme: Beauty of Arda
Elements: Beech, reach
Author's Notes: For Rhyselle for her birthday. Beta by Lindelea.
Summary: The victory is won and the world renewed--for all, it seemed, but one.
Word Count: 465

The Empty Shell

He lay ’neath boughs of swaying beech,
the leaves all fluttering, out of reach.
Spring was now come, fulfilling each!
It seemed life was his once more.

All rejoiced in firm belief
that gone fore’er were pain and grief.
But as he watched each flutt’ring leaf
he found his heart yet sore.

Although the winter’d warmed and thawed,
and all greeted him with praise and laud,
he looked upon the trodden sod,
knew himself worth nothing more.

For joy was tempered with death and loss,
scars barely hidden beneath the gloss
of bright array, and he but dross,
or so the doubts his dreams tore.

Crowned was King, and raised was song!
New Lord acclaimed by joyful throng.
Yet he felt himself still in the wrong
since he’d lost the Ring he once bore.

Home he went, but it, too, was scarred
for none had thought the Shire to guard.
But even with gates now closed and barred
he knew they could not ignore

The outer world, for it was wide
in which much evil might yet abide.
The Little Folk couldn’t think to hide
from what might yet prove in store.

Though Shire was scoured of evil Men,
surely they might yet come again.
(And the Sea, he knew, it called to him,
its waves a constant roar.)

Others the evil did chase away,
Sam saw trees planted anew to sway
in summer winds that among them play,
and the damage did restore.

But Frodo alone could find no cheer
amidst the plenty or the laughter dear.
It seemed he alone yet grief did fear,
his heart but an empty core.

He penned the tale of evil faced
by folk of all sorts, and so he traced
the history of Ring and challenge, and laced
it all with ancient lore.

But still he found he faded yet,
his pain and loss could not forget.
At last he knew a new course was set
if his hope he would restore.

He knew all now was at an end,
the Shire no longer his to tend.
He saddled pony, and with his friend
went West in search of more.

His sacrifice was now complete
as those aboard the ship did greet
his coming. Now all was mete
as they sailed to distant shore.

Now Sam was left behind to grieve
to know his Master had had to leave
behind all he’d loved. Now, all bereaved,
Sam turned for home once more.

Rosie’s greeting was gentle kiss,
drew him in, set his darling miss
upon his lap, and fulfilled all this
with the closing of the door.

Yet Sam found he must daily cope
with loss and grief, and through them grope
to know each day’s full joy with the hope
Frodo’s Light would shine once more.


( 22 comments — Leave a comment )
Apr. 16th, 2012 07:40 pm (UTC)
Beautiful. I can imagine a minstrel singing or reciting this.
Apr. 16th, 2012 07:53 pm (UTC)
Thank you so, Shirebound! (At least this shows as was intended!) And I imagine a minstrel possibly singing this indeed!
Apr. 16th, 2012 08:14 pm (UTC)
Lovely use of the rhythms and cadence. I really enjoyed reading this.

- Erulisse (one L)
Apr. 25th, 2012 03:19 am (UTC)
Thank you so, Erulisse.
Apr. 16th, 2012 08:56 pm (UTC)
I do love your poetry Larner.
Apr. 25th, 2012 03:20 am (UTC)
I'm honored, Liz. Thanks!
Apr. 16th, 2012 09:17 pm (UTC)
Great ballad. I agree, it calls for a minstrel.
Apr. 25th, 2012 03:21 am (UTC)
I hope whoever it is is better than the one from the Rankin-Bass RotK! Heh!
Apr. 17th, 2012 12:11 am (UTC)
*sniff* Beautiful!
Apr. 25th, 2012 03:21 am (UTC)
Thank you, RS9!
Apr. 17th, 2012 04:29 am (UTC)
What a great ballad!
Apr. 25th, 2012 03:21 am (UTC)
Thanks so, Linda!
Apr. 17th, 2012 05:44 pm (UTC)
Very expressive - really reminds me of Frodo!
Apr. 25th, 2012 03:23 am (UTC)
I'm so pleased to read that, Libbs. Frodo was the one who appeared to be worst affected by what he went through, after all.
Apr. 17th, 2012 05:55 pm (UTC)
I love the ending! I knew from the title it must be have been him - so sadly apt but also Hope Unquenchable there at the end - still hoping. Glad you enjoyed your b-day gift too. :)

Namarie, God bless, Antane :)
Apr. 25th, 2012 03:24 am (UTC)
It's certain that Sam would still hold the hope for Frodo throughout everything. Thanks so!
Apr. 17th, 2012 10:56 pm (UTC)
(didn't really need a beta -- it was a pleasure to read!)

Apr. 25th, 2012 03:25 am (UTC)
Well, I still thank you for reading it and giving me your feedback. Thanks so!
Apr. 18th, 2012 07:44 pm (UTC)
Great work. I'm really impressed with your meter and rhyme here (and suspect it's patterned on The Raven? If there's a particular name for that pattern, I'm not, er, versed enough in verse to be aware of it...)
Apr. 25th, 2012 03:29 am (UTC)
I'll admit I don't know the technical names for many types of poems. This was certainly not patterned on "The Raven" in particular, although I can see the reason why you would think it possible. I was just trying an AAAB pattern this time, is all. And I'm honored you liked it, although some of the scanning is a bit off.

I have tunes to a few of my poems, but not to this one.
Apr. 24th, 2012 07:38 pm (UTC)
I just adore this. Each phrase just sings.
Apr. 25th, 2012 03:30 am (UTC)
And I thank you! It was an interesting project, getting this poem written.
( 22 comments — Leave a comment )


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