All that is gold does not glitter,
not all those who wander are lost;
the old that is strong does not wither,
deep roots are not reached by the frost.
From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
a light from the shadows shall spring;
renewed shall be blade that was broken,
the crownless again shall be king.
J.R.R. Tolkien , The Fellowship of the Ring
This quote is about a character in the epic fantasy series, The Lord of the Rings, however its meaning goes far beyond the story.
Tolkien’s poem describes the difference between our perceptions and reality. A wanderer may not be lost, an old man might retain his strength, frost can kill a plant but not the root, ashes may still birth a flame, a light will shine even from the darkest of shadows, a broken blade may be mended, and a king can rise again.
This is one example of the beauty and deep meaning found in J.R.R. Tolkien’s writing. I like him as a person for having written this poem. It is one I treasure, and I wanted to share it with you. I hope it will warm you on those days when life seems difficult.
The image behind Tolkien’s words is one I took in Idaho. I was standing on the edge of the road and looking out over a valley that was once a Nez Perce hunting ground. I wish I could remember the name of the valley, but maybe one of you will know. I love the misty feel and soft colors of the picture. It struck me as a perfect match for Tolkien’s observation because it makes me want to wander through the stunning landscape.
DawnSinger: A headstrong young princess and the guardian sworn to protect her fly on winged horses on a desperate journey in a bid to fulfill prophecy. Learn more.
Wayfarer: When an untried youth ascends to the high throne of Faeraven, his mistakes tear kingdoms apart and allow just one chance at redemption. He must humble himself before the one person he banished. Learn more.