“Suddenly, caught by the level beams, Frodo saw the old king’s head: it was lying rolled away by the roadside. ‘Look, Sam!’ he cried, startled into speech. ‘Look! The King has got a crown again!'”
Book IV
Chapter 7
Journey to the Crossroads

The calm before the storm.

The next day, blindfolded, Frodo, Sam and Smeagol are returned to the wood. Faramir says farewell and disappears with his companions. Frodo feels “as if a dream had past.” And that’s a good description, isn’t it? Alone again with their task before them, as ever, their brief time with Faramir must have felt like a dream. But how long before this short rest and nourishment wear off and Frodo gets depressed again? They head off through the woods. Sam and Frodo’s packs are heavier thanks to rations from Faramir and they have new staves from Faramir, as well. Parting with gifts–perhaps not as cool as those from Galadriel when they left Lothlorien–that are bound to be helpful.

I noticed that Gollum was able to move about in the day, even if in the shade, I wonder if that’s a symptom of a change in him. But, where did he go at night, and why does he hurry them along? He couldn’t be in league with the enemy. I mean, he helps Frodo in hopes of retrieving his Precious and has vowed to never let it return to Sauron… so why does he keep disappearing? Where is he going and why is he, specifically, in such a hurry? What does he know or fear that he won’t say? At any rate, as I read, I became more and more anxious on account of Gollum’s proddings. Toward the end of the chapter, I could feel Sauron’s evil stirring as the unnatural dark falls on the land.

The closing of this chapter is one of the best. The ancient statue defaced, Frodo discovers its head, crowned with flowers and light. Frodo’s exclaims, “They cannot conquer forever!” and night falls like a curtain. It’s just perfect.

till next time,

keep thinking,

Kanazawa, Japan