>> Saturday, April 2, 2011
I don't know half of you half as well as I should like; and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve. This was unexpected and rather difficult. There was some scattered clapping, but most of them were trying to work it out and see if it came as a compliment.
Her face looked as if she was in the throes of thinking out a really crushing parting remark; but all she found to say, turning round on the step, was: 'You'll live to regret it, young fellow! Why don't you go too? You don't belong here; you're no Baggins-you-you're a Brandybuck!'
'Did you hear that, Merry? That was an insult, if you like,' said Frodo as he shut the door on her.
'It was a compliment,' said Merry Brandybuck, 'and so, of course, not true.'
'I wish it need not have happened in my time.'
'So do I,' said Gandalf, 'and so do all who live to see such days. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.'
'He deserves death.'
'Deserves it! I dare say he does. Many that live deserve death. And some that die deserve life. Can you give it to them? Then do not be too eager to deal out death in judgement. For even the very wise cannot see all ends.'
'I feel that as long as the Shire lies behind, safe and comfortable, I shall find wandering more bearable: I shall know that somewhere there is a firm foothold, even if my feet cannot stand there again.'
Suddenly he spoke, aloud but as if to himself, saying slowly: The Road goes ever on and on/Down from the door where it began./Now far ahead the Road has gone,/And I must follow, if I can,/Pursuing it with eager feet,/Until it joins some larger way/Where many paths and errands meet./And whither then? I cannot say.
'And it is also said,' answered Frodo: 'Go not to the Elves for counsel, for they will say both no and yes.'
'Is it indeed?' laughed Gildor.
'You speak of danger, but you do not understand. This is no treasure-hunt, no there-and-back journey. I am flying from deadly peril into deadly peril.'
After a while the song became clearer, and with dread in his heart he percieved that it hand changed into an incantation: Cold be hand and heart and bone,/and cold be sleep under stone:/never more to wake on stony bed,/never, till the Sun has failed and the Moon is dead./In the black wind the stars shall die,/and still on gold here let them lie,/till the Dark Lord lifts his hand/over dead sea and withered land.