The Rotting Horse on the Deadly Ground

As my fifty-first birthday approaches I’ve been waxing nostalgic and so, at the suggestion of my sister, have laboured long and hard putting together a retrospective metal playlist to serve as a soundtrack for the coming celebrations. I wanted it to sort of tell the story of how I became a headbanger thirty-six years agoContinue reading “The Rotting Horse on the Deadly Ground”

Easter With Excalibur

This post includes spoilers for the 1981 film Excalibur. Watching John Boorman’s epic 1981 fantasy film Excalibur has become an Easter tradition in my family, not just because at one point a priest praying for deliverance from the film’s main villain, Morgana, intones the words: “and on this Easter day, when Christ rose from theContinue reading “Easter With Excalibur”

Another Tolkien-themed Birthday!

This post contains spoilers for both the book and film versions of The Lord of the Rings. Some of you may recall that for my 50th birthday I decided to celebrate Hobbit-style, since Bilbo and Frodo were both fifty years old when they each set out on their respective adventures. Well, my sister’s birthday was onContinue reading “Another Tolkien-themed Birthday!”

The Breaking of the Fellowship

This post contains spoilers for both the book and film versions of The Lord of the Rings. I’ve been continuing my re-read of J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings, which as I mentioned early on I used to do every year, but if I’m honest haven’t really done since before the releaseContinue reading “The Breaking of the Fellowship”

Christmas With J.R.R. Tolkien: The Father Christmas Letters — A Pilgrim in Narnia

My little 2015 piece on J.R.R. Tolkien’s funny and endearing Father Christmas Letters has had quite a spin around the internet this week. I cannot think of a better Christmas note for you, dear readers of A Pilgrim in Narnia, than to touch this up a bit and send it back out. I have come […]Continue reading “Christmas With J.R.R. Tolkien: The Father Christmas Letters — A Pilgrim in Narnia”

Lothlórien

This post contains spoilers for both the book and film versions of The Lord of the Rings. At this point in my re-read of J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings, the Fellowship has made it to “the heart of Elvendom on earth,” Lothlórien, the literal meaning of which is “Dreamflower.” Also calledContinue reading “Lothlórien”

“These Are Not Holes. This is The Great Realm and City of The Dwarrowdelf.” Gimli Speaks of The Glory of Moria Of Old. — Wisdom from The Lord of the Rings

The Fellowship of the Ring by J.R.R Tolkien (Harper Collins 1991) pp. 306-310 After a night spent in silent thought at the door to the guardroom Gandalf announces to a rested company the way that he will lead them. “It is time we began to climb up again.” He leads them along what was once […]Continue reading ““These Are Not Holes. This is The Great Realm and City of The Dwarrowdelf.” Gimli Speaks of The Glory of Moria Of Old. — Wisdom from The Lord of the Rings”

A Journey in the Dark

This post contains spoilers for both the film and book versions of The Lord of the Rings. Some of you may recall that back in September I declared my intent to begin re-reading J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings that month for the first time in many years (since the Peter JacksonContinue reading “A Journey in the Dark”

Medieval Carpenters — A Writer’s Perspective

Bradford on Avon Tithe Barn Exterior We’re back with medieval crafts and trades this week, looking at carpenters. There have always been carpenters. Two thousand years ago, Joseph, the earthly father of Jesus, was a carpenter and there were carpenters two thousand years before him. Their craft remained unchanged for centuries. We know that carpentry […]Continue reading “Medieval Carpenters — A Writer’s Perspective”

The Grim, the Dark, and the Light of Middle-earth — Traveling in Books

Once upon a time, in a 2014 interview with Rolling Stone, George R.R. Martin made a few comments about The Lord of the Rings and the flaws he saw therein. While he stated that he is a fan of Tolkien and of The Lord of the Rings, Martin declared that Tolkien had a “medieval philosophy” […]Continue reading “The Grim, the Dark, and the Light of Middle-earth — Traveling in Books”