The Fall of Gondolin – A Silmarillion ballad

by Apr 3, 2003Poetry

The sun was bright, and warm the light on Gondolin the fair
When Turgon King, of whom they sing, sat high on silver chair.
How white the walls and high the halls of Gondolin that was!
Above the wars, it shone of stars, but now no longer does.

O elven king! Your rule is great
But ‘ware of Ulmo’s call:
Love not too much what thou hast wrought
Lest it to darkness fall.

In peace they stayed and never strayed from Gondolin their home
For leaguer kept, a princess wept, and gained her leave to roam.
Returning well, Ar-Feniel brought home with her a son
Both tall of stance and sharp of glance: the city’s doom had come.

O Maeglin! Son of dark and light
You came and may not part,
For love of Idril Silver-foot
Has darkened in your heart.

His love grew strong, he waited long, but love she never gave
To him, and dark then was his heart, although his deeds were brave.
To mortal man went Idril’s hand, and Maeglin’s anger grew;
In captive fear, to Morgoth’s ear, he whispered all he knew.

O Morgoth! Melkor once you were,
O captain dark and fell
Eru’s favor once you had
But now in darkness dwell.

At Morgoth’s call came Balrogs tall, with swords of evil flame
They burned with hate and to the Gates of Gondolin they came.
The gates they broke, the city woke, and into terror fell
An elf-lord slew the first one through, but gave his life as well.

Ecthelion! Your silver sword
Did vanquish well your foe
But bitter was the price you paid
Your song doth end in woe.

His heart grown cold, dark Maeglin stole fair Idril and her son
But Tuor strove to save his love, and killed the faithless one.
To orkish bane and dragon flame so many elves fell prey
Though courage quailed and children wailed, they led the rest away.

O Gondolin! Your banners proud
Lie mired in the mud
And Turgon who your high gates wrought
Hath bought them with his blood.

A shadow fell, but Glorfindel did stand upon the path
And there he fought in battle hot on Cirith Thoronath
The shadowed death, whose burning breath did thrice the elf-lord smite;
His honor won, the battle done, he perished in the night.

O Glorfindel! Your city burns
In fear your people flee
For darkness walks in Gondolin:
Thy people look to thee.

As Manwë warned, the people mourned for those they lost that day
For Turgon fell, and Glorfindel, and Ecthelion the fey
Now lost to time in all but rhyme is Gondolin the fair
Where now the walls, where now the halls, where now the silver chair?


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Found in Home 5 Reading Room 5 Poetry 5 The Fall of Gondolin – A Silmarillion ballad

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