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"Everything we read stimulates our mind to think, and what we think determines what we desire, and desires are the seedbed of our actions. Given this iron law of human nature--from reading to thinking, to desiring, to acting--we are shaping our destiny by the ideas we choose to have enter our minds through print." - Fr. John Hardon, S.J., The Catholic Lifetime Reading Plan

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Wednesday, May 23, 2007

What if Tolkien Wrote Stairway to Heaven?

I was purging some computer files the other day when I ran across these song lyrics I wrote a few years ago after Peter Jackson's Fellowship of the Ring had just been released. It was something I did just for fun to show to my eighth grade students when we were studying The Hobbit. I forgot about until I found it the other day. I thought some of you might find it amusing.

The song is about Aragorn and his role in the Fellowship and Middle-earth. It's meant to be sung to the tune of "Stairway to Heaven," so you might want to listen to that song before you read these lyrics. Or, you can listen to this midi file (from Diamond-back.com) and sing along! On second thought, maybe you should just listen to "Stairway to Heaven" and call it good.

Anyway, here it is, with my apologies to Led Zeppelin:

He's Guiding a Hobbit to Mordor

There's a ranger who knows
All that glitters ain't gold
And he's guiding a hobbit
To Mordor

When he gets there he knows
If the Black Gate is closed
With a sword he do what he came for.
Ooh, ooh, and he's guiding a hobbit
To Mordor.

There's a sign on Khazad-dum
But he wants to be sure
'Cause you know sometimes runes have two meanings.
In a tree by the falls, there's an elf lass who sings;
Sometimes all of her hopes are misgiven.

Ooh, it makes him wander.
Ooh, it makes him wander.

There's a feeling she gets
When she looks to the west
And her spirit is crying for leaving.
In her thoughts she has seen
Rings of smoke through the trees
And the ranger is fighting the goblins.

Ooh, it makes him wander.
Ooh, it really makes him wander.

And it's whispered that soon
Rohan riders will swoon
For the worm tongue will lead them to treason.
And the new day won't dawn
For those who fight long,
But the forests will echo with entmoot.

If there's a traitor in the comp'ny
Don't be alarmed now,
It's just a vision by the elf queen.
Yes, there are two paths you can go by
But after Moria
You must determine which road you're on.
And it makes you wander.

Your head is humming and it won't go
In case you don't know.
The ring is calling you to take it.
Dear ranger can you hear the wind blow
And did you know
Your stairway lies through the paths of dead?

And as you wind on down the road
The Shadow taller than your soul
There walks a hobbit we all know
Who shines white light where cobwebs grow
And always bears that band of gold.
And if you listen very hard
The reign will come to you at last
Wherefore Arwen and Elessar
Will tie the knot and be made whole.

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posted by Nick Senger at 5:55 AM

Comments on "What if Tolkien Wrote Stairway to Heaven?"


Blogger KHB said ... (Wednesday, May 23, 2007 8:04:00 AM) : 

It's funny, but I've always kind of associated "Stairway to Heaven" with LOTR. Maybe its the album art with the wizardy fellow - dunno. Then again, I also associate a great many Queen songs with Arthurian legend, so maybe I've just got a mental wire crossed. :)

Love the lyrics. They're perfect...


Anonymous Maureen said ... (Wednesday, May 23, 2007 12:03:00 PM) : 

OK Nick,

As "Stairway to Heaven" was a theme song for many a teen in the old days.....I've about got you pegged as MY age! : )

Back in the old days, I won an 8th grade sesquicentennial contest putting our town's history into my own words to the song, "Today", while I accompanied myself singing on the guitar. My NOW 8th grader got a real kick out of it! (we still have an audio tape) It'll be great blackmail if I ever choose to run for office someday!

I think writing or learning "descriptive lyrics" is a great teaching tool, as kids especially identify with music at this age.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (Wednesday, May 23, 2007 12:40:00 PM) : 



Anonymous stefanie said ... (Thursday, May 24, 2007 5:48:00 AM) : 

I'll never listen to Stairway to Heaven in the same way again ;)


Blogger Nick Senger said ... (Thursday, May 24, 2007 6:39:00 AM) : 

KHB: Led Zeppelin actually references Mordor and I think the ringwraiths in a couple of their songs.

Maureen: I won't say how old I am, but my wife did arrange for forty of my friends to send me letters on my last birthday (I didn't even know I had forty friends!).

Sylvia and Stefanie: Sorry! :-)


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