On the anniversary of his death
For the majority of people, 2nd September is as normal a day as any other. It follows after the 1st and precedes the 3rd.
However, for Tolkien readers, this date is of particular significance. Just as we celebrate the birth of John Ronald every 3rd of January, so do we recognise and honour the day he passed away in 1973.
I’m sure Tolkien would not have wanted his avid readers and admirers to adulate him on such a day, in a quasi-religious state of fanaticism.
Yet, there’s nothing wrong in remembering the life and death of an individual who has touched millions of people throughout the long years since his absence.
In essence, that is the beauty of it all.
That the work of art you have left behind, art you have worked on passionately for the sheer joy of it, has transformed from a sapling into a tree bearing the fruits of a legacy; spreading its branches over the literary world and influencing other aspiring artists and admirers to cherish and appreciate these works.
That is the fascination of J.R.R. Tolkien.
I would like to end with one of my most favourite quotes from The Lord of the Rings.
Perhaps it’s not relevant to today’s topic, but it’s a quote I love to share (… just for the sheer joy of it):
“I do not love the bright sword for its sharpness, nor the arrow for its swiftness, nor the warrior for his glory. I love only that which they defend.”
Book 4, Chapter 5; ‘The Window on the West’
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers
Share with us a favourite quote in the comments below.