Where is the poem "Kor"?

Discussion in 'J R R Tolkien' started by HareBrain, Feb 14, 2010.

  1.  
    HareBrain

    HareBrain Lagomorphing Staff Member

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    I remember reading it years ago, probably in one of the HOME series, but I can't remember where. Anyone know?
     
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    The Judge

    The Judge Truth. Order. Moderation. Staff Member

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    I don't know the poem myself, but any lines you remember to help us search for it, or jog others' memories?


    found this reference to it if it's of any help:

    in an Amazon review of 'Tolkien's Legendarium, Essays on the History of Middle-Earth'
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2010
  3.  
    HareBrain

    HareBrain Lagomorphing Staff Member

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    Nope, sorry, the only things I remember about it is that it was about 20-30 lines long, and was written early on.
     
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    j d worthington

    j d worthington Moderator Staff Member

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    It is in The Book of Lost Tales, Volume 1, p. 136 (American edition). I'm not sure if the British and American editions (hb) match; if not, or if you have a paper (or trade paper) edition, so it may be more helpful to say you can find it in Chapter V, "The Coming of the Elves and the Making of Kôr".
     
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    HareBrain

    HareBrain Lagomorphing Staff Member

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    Thanks JD - now ordered from the library.
     
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    pyan

    pyan Fortiter et recte! Staff Member

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    It's on the same page of the UK edition of the Unwin trade p/b as well.

    I wish JRRT had kept the name Kôr - the change to Túna was just a little infelicitous, IMHO...

    And for anyone who'd like to see it, but hasn't got TBoLT1:




    A sable hill, gigantic, rampart-crowned
    Stands gazing out across a azure sea
    Under an azure sky , on whose dark ground
    Impearled as against a floor of porphyry
    Gleam marble temples white, and dazzling halls;
    And tawny shadows fingered long are made
    In fretted bars upon their ivory walls
    By massy trees rock-rooted in the shade
    Like stony chiselled pillars on the vault
    With shaft and capital of black basalt.
    There slow forgotten days for ever reap
    The silent shadows counting out rich hours
    And no voice stirs; and all the marble towers
    White, hot and soundless, ever burn and sleep.
     
  7.  
    The Judge

    The Judge Truth. Order. Moderation. Staff Member

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    Well, I can't say it's one I'm going to bother committing to memory, though I quite like the final clause (except the overspilling 'White'). As a matter of interest to a complete ignoramus here, is this the same poem (?sonnet?) as the one to which I found reference ie 'Kor: In a City Lost and Dead'?
     
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    j d worthington

    j d worthington Moderator Staff Member

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    Indeed it is. The latter phrase is the subtitle of the piece in The Book of Lost Tales....
     
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    pyan

    pyan Fortiter et recte! Staff Member

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    I don't know what the form would be called, I'm afraid - it's almost an English sonnet, but the end couplet has been moved to lines 9&10.

    Sonnet: ababcdcdefefgg
    Kôr: ababcdcdeefgfg
     
  10.  
    The Judge

    The Judge Truth. Order. Moderation. Staff Member

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    Thanks jd - I wondered as the poem seemed to fit the idea of a dead city, but it seems a little inconsequential for a 'detailed analysis' somehow.

    Yes, I saw that Pyan, that's why I hesitated about calling it a sonnet. I've seen them without the final couplet (eg Manley Hopkins with abba abba cdc dcd and abba abba ccd ccd) but not with the couplet moved up like that. Odd.
     
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    HareBrain

    HareBrain Lagomorphing Staff Member

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    Isn't it fggf at the end?

    Thanks for transcribing it, Pyan. It's shorter than I remembered, but still brings an effective atmosphere, to my mind.
     
  12.  
    pyan

    pyan Fortiter et recte! Staff Member

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    Oops! Of course it is. Sorry...:eek:
     

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