Reviews for Ascension
anonymouse chapter 1 . 11/19/2008
I can never seem to find the right words in reviews, but here goes:

1. It's lovely.

2. It's haunting.

3. I first read it years ago, and it's still a favourite.
Hahukum Konn chapter 1 . 12/5/2005
I liked this poem. :) I like these fics that try to explore Denethor's feelings and motivations rather than just making him evil!Denethor.

I particularly liked the lines that read "An unthanked servant of an absent king" or variants thereof.
RavenLady chapter 1 . 4/25/2005
Beautifully done, and perfect for Denethor.
Dostoevsky's Mouse chapter 1 . 5/13/2004
Oh my lord. This is... astoundingly beautiful.
In all sincerity, it is the single best piece of fan poetry I have ever read. Normally, when reviewing a poem or story, I would point out the best lines - the most vivid, most poignant, most powerful... but on this occasion, I can't choose. The whole poem, from the first word to the last, is perfect. Just... ye gods.
My only possible critique would be that a few of the lines are not capitalized, or that you might put a comma after "outside" in line seven, just for clarity (at first I read it as "outside the shadow"). But that's nothing.
Really, I cannot even tell you how much I stand in awe, both of the mechanics - the eloquence of the words; the exquisite fit of the lines into one another; the rhymes, simple, final, and never forced - and of the sentiment, the symbology, the sheer depth of spirit that winds through it. I doff my hat to you. Amazing, amazing work.
fileg chapter 1 . 5/20/2003
Majoranka – thanks so much for taking the time to comment on Ascension. I was more surprised to have your feedback than to find that people were not reviewing poetry – I don’t think there are too many people reading it, and it can be very intimidating to review. I write quite a lot of verse these day, and much of it is fairly formal – that happened because I began writing my Tolkien verse in Denethor’s voice.

When I first became a Member of Henneth Annun, I did not think I would show my work – but there was a challenge running to write the poetry of Denethor, and I became fascinated with the idea of all the thoughts he must have had and could not show pouring out of him as verse in his study late at night. I wrote the villanelle, Finduilas, because I thought the intricate style fit the culture of Gondor – opulent and interwoven, but falling gently into decay. But I was much happier with this piece, and I think it is my best work in the form. (Though currently I am excited to have written “Home By Morning”, which is so different from anything else I have ever written, but seems to have a life of its own) Resigned is what I was examining here; Duty must have been deeply instilled in him to make him give it so strongly to his boys, even after he had no hope that it would prevail. I think what writing Ascension taught me is what the dark may have used against him when he took up the palantir. I love you own phrasing of “to rule the kingless land that lay in the shadow of Ephel Dúath”… Don’t be surprised if I ask to put it in a poem someday!

I have been writing in Denethor’s voice because I am trying to understand him. I gave my heart to this book (and especially to Faramir) many many years ago, and I find that I still learn something new every time I read it. Denethor has always caused a blind rage I my, and recently I decided that if I was going to have so much anger, it would be good to know exactly why. Instead, I am finding many different ways to think about his life.

If you are interested in the interlocked verse forms, I moderate a forum on the writer’s side of Henneth Annun (are you a member?) called Verse and Adversity. If you are not a member, you can see the basic layouts of some unusual forms on my own website – .com - (follow the writing links) What you say about the Terzanelle – “I love the way the verses repeat, their meaning each time changed in dependence on the context, and in the end one is thrown back at the beginning again with a!” is exactly what a terzanelle should do, so you have paid me a very high compliment, indeed!
Majoranka chapter 1 . 5/20/2003
I read this poem at Henneth Annun a few days ago, and now, by chance in fact, I found out you have your own page here at . And was stunned. I can't believe nobody has reviewed this yet.

You have managed to capture the tragedy of the man, his resolve, his devotion - and the seeds of his despair. There's no despair yet in Ascension, but a certain touch of... reconciliation to fate, I guess - not in the sense of surrender, but in the sense of acceptance of what comes and willingness to carry on one's duty in spite of it, even may it be in vain. Even may it be bitter. You've portrayed with poignant accuracy what it must have felt like, to rule the kingless land that lay in the shadow of Ephel Dúath...

I must admit that this is the first time I've encountered a terzanelle; and I am completely fascinated by it. I love the way the verses repeat, their meaning each time changed in dependence on the context, and in the end one is thrown back at the beginning again with a new understanding.

I also very much like your style. It is full of beautiful metaphors but not too flowery, perfectly fitting for Denethor's character. I guess if he was one for writing poetry, it might very well look like this :-)

Thank you very much for sharing this with us.

- majoranka, a bit ashamed of the long rant