How Long? - A look into the slow decay of King Theoden under Grima Wormtongue

How long have you sat here, Theoden,
An ancient reflection of yourself,
Sagging and frail?
How long has it been since you met him,
So eager to help, so confident,
Yet depending on your every word?
You had so much troubling you --
Rohan's strength failing, her people dying,
and Saruman, old ally, suddenly treacherous,
coiling up,
rearing his head before the strike --
So much that you did not notice
The snake hissing in your ear.

He craved approval; you gave it.
He alone understood -- oh, how he understood!
Thus he preyed upon you.

He wished to take responsibility,
Ease the burdens that plagued you,
And slowly you gave them over.

He requested advice on everything,
Then muttered soothing pride
As you confirmed his decisions.

You feel useless now, and you are,
For Grima controls Rohan now,
And you are but a whisper of affirmation,
reverberating, fainter, fainter,
Around the Golden Hall.

A will of your own? You sold it long ago,
Along with youth and dignity,
Thought and kingdom,
To your confidant, your advisor, your "friend",
Who was bought by Saruman before you knew him.

Rohan is ready to fall.
She has already crumbled from within.

Lily's Note: A bit different from my usual fare, but it came to me, and I wrote for fear of losing it. Comments are, of course, always welcome, but as I'm not sure how much criticism is encouraged in the comments, if you'd like to offer badly needed advice or said criticism, please write me at Thanks, and may the Shire be with you!

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