He carried the stars in his pocket
Drank the sunrise till he was drunk
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31st-Dec-2014 11:31 pm - Comment to be added

Misc: Sam and Frodo
Click here to listen to or download my recording.

Sam heard him and crawled with an effort to the edge. ‘Master, master!’ he called. ‘Master!’

He heard no answer. He found he was shaking all over, but he gathered his breath, and once again he shouted: ‘Master!’ The wind seemed to blow his voice back into his throat, but as it passed, roaring up the gully and away over the hills, a faint answering cry came to his ears:

‘All right, all right! I’m here. But I can’t see.’

Frodo was calling with a weak voice. He was not actually very far away. He had slid and not fallen, and had come up with a jolt to his feet on a wider ledge not many yards lower down. Fortunately the rock-face at this point leaned well back and the wind had pressed him against the cliff, so that he had not toppled over. He steadied himself a little, laying his face against the cold stone, feeling his heart pounding. But either the darkness had grown complete, or else his eyes had lost their sight. All was black about him. He wondered if he had been struck blind. He took a deep breath.

‘Come back! Come back!’ he heard Sam’s voice out of the blackness above.

‘I can’t,’ he said. ‘I can’t see. I can’t find any hold. I can’t move yet.’

‘What can I do, Mr. Frodo? What can I do?’ shouted Sam, leaning out dangerously far. Why could not his master see? It was dim, certainly, but not as dark as all that. He could see Frodo below him, a grey forlorn figure splayed against the cliff. But he was far out of the reach of any helping hand.

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16th-Mar-2014 04:19 pm - Read Lotr Aloud: The Palantir
Click here to listen or download. (Box's embed feature doesn't seem to be working on LJ lately!)

'So this is the thief!' said Gandalf. Hastily he cast his cloak over the globe where it lay. 'But you, Pippin! This is a grievous turn to things!' He knelt by Pippin's body: the hobbit was lying on his back rigid, with unseeing eyes staring up at the sky. 'The devilry! What mischief has he done-to himself, and to all of us?' The wizard's face was drawn and haggard.

He took Pippin's hand and bent over his face, listening for his breath; then he laid his hands on his brow. The hobbit shuddered. His eyes closed. He cried out; and sat up. staring in bewilderment at all the faces round him, pale in the moonlight.

'It is not for you, Saruman!' he cried in a shrill and toneless voice shrinking away from Gandalf. 'I will send for it at once. Do you understand? Say just that!' Then he struggled to get up and escape but Gandalf held him gently and firmly.

'Peregrin Took!' he said. 'Come back!'

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(For read_lotr_aloud)
Misc: Sam and Frodo
Click here to listen to or download my reading.

‘Peace!’ said Saruman, and for a fleeting moment his voice was less suave, and a light flickered in his eyes and was gone. ‘I do not speak to you yet, Gimli Glóin’s son,’ he said. ‘Far away is your home and small concern of yours are the troubles of this land. But it was not by design of your own that you became embroiled in them, and so I will not blame such part as you have played – a valiant one, I doubt not. But I pray you, allow me first to speak with the King of Rohan, my neighbour, and once my friend.

‘What have you to say, Théoden King? Will you have peace with me, and all the aid that my knowledge, founded in long years, can bring? Shall we make our counsels together against evil days, and repair our injuries with such good will that our estates shall both come to fairer flower than ever before?’

Still Théoden did not answer. Whether he strove with anger or doubt none could say. Éomer spoke.
‘Lord, hear me!’ he said. ‘Now we feel the peril that we were warned of. Have we ridden forth to victory, only to stand at last amazed by an old liar with honey on his forked tongue? So would the trapped wolf speak to the hounds, if he could. What aid can he give to you, forsooth? All he desires is to escape from his plight. But will you parley with this dealer in treachery and murder? Remember Théodred at the Fords, and the grave of Háma in Helm’s Deep!’

‘If we speak of poisoned tongues what shall we say of yours, young serpent?’ said Saruman, and the flash of his anger was now plain to see. ‘But come, Éomer, Éomund’s son!’ he went on in his soft voice again. ‘To every man his part. Valour in arms is yours, and you win high honour thereby. Slay whom your lord names as enemies, and be content. Meddle not in policies which you do not understand. But maybe, if you become a king, you will find that he must choose his friends with care. The friendship of Saruman and the power of Orthanc cannot be lightly thrown aside, whatever grievances, real or fancied, may lie behind. You have won a battle but not a war – and that with help on which you cannot count again. You may find the Shadow of the Wood at your own door next: it is wayward, and senseless, and has no love for Men.

‘But my lord of Rohan, am I to be called a murderer, because valiant men have fallen in battle? If you go to war, needlessly, for I did not desire it, then men will be slain. But if I am a murderer on that account, then all the House of Eorl is stained with murder; for they have fought many wars, and assailed many who defied them. Yet with some they have afterwards made peace, none the worse for being politic. I say, Théoden King: shall we have peace and friendship, you and I? It is ours to command.’
15th-Jan-2014 06:32 pm - Coriolanus write up
Tom Hiddleston // Henry V white
Sorry it took so long!

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27th-Oct-2013 08:47 pm - Read_lotr_aloud: Flotsom and Jetsam

'Half a moment!' said Pippin. Putting his hand inside the breast of his jacket he pulled out a little soft wallet on a string. 'I keep a treasure or two near my skin, as precious as Rings to me. Here's one: my old wooden pipe. And here's another: an unused one. I have carried it a long way,, though I don't know why. I never really expected to find any pipe-weed on the journey, when my own ran out. But now it comes in useful after all.' He held up a small pipe with a wide flattened bowl, and handed it to Gimli. 'Does that settle the score between us?' he said. 'Settle it!' cried Gimli. 'Most noble hobbit, it leaves me deep in your debt.'

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For 22nd September members of read_lotr_aloud were asked to choose a piece to read featuring either Bilbo or Frodo, to celebrate their joint birthday on that day. All posts will be complied to be posted in the community on Sunday 22nd. I chose a section of one of my favourite chapters from The Lord of the Rings, and a chapter I never got to participate in via the community, as I only joined once it had been completed. A Long Expected Party combines the comedy and lighter touch of The Hobbit with a growing shadow that will come to overtake the characters of this next novel as they learn the terrible truth behind Bilbo's innocuous seeming magic ring.

Misc: Grass
(I don't know where the clicking sound is coming from but it's not me.)

Aqaba by Bill Caddick, leant from June Tabor's album of the same name.

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Our Captain Cried All Hands/Fountains Flowing, traditional, tune learnt from spending a lot of time in churches, lyrics from several versions.

All instalments will soon be up at read_lotr_aloud

So it was that in the light of a fair morning King Théoden and Gandalf the White Rider met again upon the green grass beside the Deeping-stream. There was also Aragorn son of Arathorn, and Legolas the Elf, and Erkenbrand of Westfold, and the lords of the Golden House. About them were gathered the Rohirrim, the Riders of the Mark: wonder overcame their joy in victory, and their eyes were turned towards the wood.

Suddenly there was a great shout, and down from the Dike came those who had been driven back into the Deep. There came Gamling the Old, and Éomer son of Éomund, and beside them walked Gimli the dwarf. He had no helm, and about his head was a linen band stained with blood; but his voice was loud and strong.

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Misc: Sam and Frodo

'Assuredly not. lord,' said Wormtongue. 'I care for you and yours as best I may. But do not weary yourself, or tax too heavily your strength. Let others deal with these irksome guests. Your meat is about to be set on the board. Will you not go to it?'

'I will,' said Théoden. 'And let food for my guests be set on the board beside me. The host rides today. Send the heralds forth! Let them summon all who dwell nigh! Every man and strong lad able to bear arms, all who have horses, let them be ready in the saddle at the gate ere the second hour from noon!'

'Dear lord!' cried Wormtongue. 'It is as I feared. This wizard has bewitched you. Are none to be left to defend the Golden Hall of your fathers, and all your treasure? None to guard the Lord of the Mark?'
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28th-Jan-2013 07:54 pm - read_lotr_aloud: The White Rider
All posts will soon be up at read_lotr_aloud.

'What then shall I say?' said Gandalf, and paused for a while in thought. 'This in brief is how I see things at the moment, if you wish to have a piece of my mind as plain as possible. The Enemy, of course, has long known that the Ring is abroad, and that it is borne by a hobbit. He knows now the number of our Company that set out from Rivendell, and the kind of each of us. But he does not yet perceive our purpose clearly. He supposes that we were all going to Minas Tirith; for that is what he would himself have done in our place. And according to his wisdom it would have been a heavy stroke against his power. Indeed he is in great fear, not knowing what mighty one may suddenly appear, wielding the Ring, and assailing him with war, seeking to cast him down and take his place. That we should wish to cast him down and have no one in his place is not a thought that occurs to his mind. That we should try to destroy the Ring itself has not yet entered into his darkest dream. In which no doubt you will see our good fortune and our hope. For imagining war he has let loose war, believing that he has no time to waste; for he that strikes the first blow, if he strikes it hard enough, may need to strike no more. So the forces that he has long been preparing he is now setting in motion, sooner than he intended. Wise fool. For if he had used all his power to guard Mordor, so that none could enter, and bent all his guild to the hunting of the Ring, then indeed hope would have faded: neither Ring nor Bearer could long have eluded him. But now his eye gazes abroad rather than near at home; and mostly he looks towards Minas Tirith. Very soon now his strength will fall upon it like a storm.

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Misc: Snoopy

I ballsed up the ending but I couldn't quite bear doing that many bad jokes again!

Lyrics slightly modified from here.
21st-Jan-2013 09:24 pm - More of me singing
Marillion: Pete
The January Man. Lyrics by Dave Goulder. I learnt the tune from Martin Carthy's recording.

All sections will soon be up at read_lotr_aloud

'Why are there so few when you have lived in this country so long?' asked Pippin. 'Have a great many died?'

'Oh, no!' said Treebeard. 'None have died from inside, as you might say. Some have fallen in the evil chances of the long years, of course: and more have grown tree-ish. But there were never many of us and we have not increased. There have been no Entings – no children, you would say, not for a terrible long count of years. You see, we lost the Entwives.'

'How very sad!' said Pippin. 'How was it that they all died?'

'They did not _die_!' said Treebeard. 'I never said _died_. We lost them, I said. We lost them and we cannot find them.' He sighed. 'I thought most folk knew that. There were songs about the hunt of the Ents for the Entwives sung among Elves and Men from Mirkwood to Gondor. They cannot be quite forgotten.'

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29th-Nov-2012 09:49 am - Christmas Cards!
Marillion: Christmas
If you would like a card from me this year please fill in the poll below!
Poll #1881881 Christmas Cards


Address 2



24th-Sep-2012 05:55 pm - read_lotr_aloud: Treebeard
I still have a bad cold, but I thought I might as well do the reading now while my poor voice can go half an octave lower than usual. :D

As always the full chapter will be posted over at read_lotr_aloud from 1st October.

You may also download the reading here.

Pippin, though still amazed, no longer felt afraid. Under those eyes he felt a curious suspense, but not fear. 'Please.' he said, 'who are you? And what are you?'

A queer look came into the old eyes, a kind of wariness; the deep wells were covered over. '
Hrum, now,' answered the voice; 'well, I am an Ent, or that's what they call me. Yes, Ent is the word. The Ent, I am, you might say, in your manner of speaking. Fangorn is my name according to some, Treebeard others make it. Treebeard will do.'

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23rd-Jul-2012 10:03 pm - read_lotr_aloud: The Uruk-hai
Firstly a) sorry about the background noise. My neighbour was building a bonfire. *sigh* b) as well as my lovely and not at all over-acted Orc voices this time you also get to hear our very special guest star SEAN ASTIN read the first part of this chapter. As usual his and all other sections will be posted over at read_lotr_aloud. Sean was incredibly gracious to do this and we are all ridiculously proud of our odd little venture, I can assure you.

(You may also download the reading here)

'Pick up those prisoners!' shouted Uglúk. 'Don't play any tricks with them! If they are not alive when we get back, someone else will die too.'

An Orc seized Pippin like a sack. put its head between his tied hands, grabbed his arms and dragged them down, until Pippin's face was crushed against its neck; then it jolted off with him. Another treated Merry in the same way. The Orc's clawlike hand gripped Pippin's arms like iron; the nails bit into him. He shut his eyes and slipped back into evil dreams. Suddenly he was thrown on to the stony floor again. It was early night, but the slim moon was already falling westward. They were on the edge of a cliff that seemed to look out over a sea of pale mist. There was a sound of water falling nearby.

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27th-May-2012 07:44 pm - read_lotr_aloud: The Riders of Rohan

Aragorn searched the ground in a wide circle, but no other traces of the fight could be found. They went on. Already the eastward sky was turning pale; the stars were fading, and a grey light was slowly growing. A little further north they came to a fold in which a tiny stream, falling and winding, had cut a stony path down into the valley. In it some bushes grew, and there were patches of grass upon its sides.

'At last!' said Aragorn. 'Here are the tracks that we seek! Up this water-channel: this is the way that the Orcs went after their debate.'

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CLICK HERE to listen to or download my reading.

Why are you so unfriendly? ' said Boromir. `I am a true man, neither thief nor tracker. I need your Ring: that you know now; but I give you my word that I do not desire to keep it. Will you not at least let me make trial of my plan? Lend me the Ring!'

`No! no! ' cried Frodo. 'The Council laid it upon me to bear it.'

`It is by our own folly that the Enemy will defeat us,' cried Boromir. `How it angers me! Fool! Obstinate fool! Running willfully to death and ruining our cause. If any mortals have claim to the Ring, it is the men of Numenor, and not Halflings. It is not yours save by unhappy chance. It might have been mine. It should be mine. Give it to me! '

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All other parts of this chapter will be posted at read_lotr_aloud

With this installment we have completed The Fellowship of the Ring! My part in this journey began in February 2009, and there have been a few hitches along the way, so I'm proud that I've reached this stage in the road. Here's to The Two Towers!

28th-Jan-2012 09:51 pm - read_lotr_aloud: The Great River
CLICK HERE to listen to or download my reading.

`Perhaps so,' said Aragorn. `But it will be hard to find the path unless the fog lifts a little later on. And we must find the path, if we are to pass Sarn Gebir and come to the Emyn Muil.'

'I do not see why we should pass the Rapids or follow the River any further,' said Boromir. `If the Emyn Muil lie before us, then we can abandon these cockle-boats, and strike westward and southward, until we come to the Entwash and cross into my own land.'

`We can, if we are making for Minas Tirith,' said Aragorn, `but that is not yet agreed. And such a course may be more perilous than it sounds. The vale of Entwash is flat and fenny, and fog is a deadly peril there for those on foot and laden. I would not abandon our boats until we must. The River is at least a path that cannot be missed.'

`But the Enemy holds the eastern bank,' objected Boromir. `And even if you pass the Gates of Argonath and come unmolested to the Tindrock, what will you do then? Leap down the Falls and land in the marshes? '

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All other parts of this chapter will be posted at read_lotr_aloud
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