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Happy Birthday J.R.R. Tolkien

Today is the inimitable J.R.R.Tolkien’s birthday, and to celebrate I’ve chosen a fun favorite of his poems from the Lord of the Rings series. This one appears in Volume 1 The Fellowship of the Ring, in the chapter entitled “At the Sign of the Prancing Pony.” This is the chapter in which the Frodo, Sam, Merry and Pippin take shelter in an inn recommended by Tom Bombadil, and meet the mysterious Ranger named Strider. If you’ve relied on the movie version, this won’t be familiar to you. The plot was shortened for the movie, so the scene in the movie … Continue reading Happy Birthday J.R.R. Tolkien

When I am dead

Gorgeous video of one of my favorite poems by Christina Rossetti – arranged by Bear McCreary. When I am dead, my dearest, Sing no sad songs for me; Plant thou no roses at my head, Nor shady cypress tree: Be the green grass above me With showers and dewdrops wet; And if thou wilt, remember, And if thou wilt, forget. I shall not see the shadows, I shall not feel the rain; I shall not hear the nightingale Sing on, as if in pain: And dreaming through the twilight That doth not rise nor set, Haply I may remember, And … Continue reading When I am dead

Death and Conception in Man is One

Today is the Celebration of the Annunciation! Christ in the womb is generally not-spoken-of in protestant Christianity.  Christ is born, Christ teaches, Christ dies, all in a year. I don’t remember when I first became aware of the Celebration of the Annunciation.  I don’t know how many times I had absent-mindedly admired beautiful paintings and stained glass windows depicting the otherworldly Angelic visitation at  Christmas and missed the timing.  I don’t know how many times I had heard beautifully crafted musical expressions of Gabriel’s announcement (Missus est Gabriel angelus) and  Mary’s response (Magnificat),  even sung them in the midst of a December … Continue reading Death and Conception in Man is One