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The problem with using two giant fiery lamps set on gigantic pillars to light your new continent is that obviously the first thing Melkor is going to do when he finds them is knock over the pillars, simultaneously plunging the continent into darkness and setting it on fire. Try, try again!

I'm sorrry to say that I haven't gotten very far in the Silmarillion this week. Reading has been slow in general due to an inconvenient combination of work and illness. So I'm still in the shallows. The second chapter, “Of Aule and Yavanna,” has my favorite Tolkien creation story – how the Dwarves were made. It makes a good contrast to Melkor's ongoing difficulty. Aule, the Vala who likes making things best, is too impatient to wait for the Children of Illuvatar to show up, because he wants students. Melkor is impatient because he wants slaves and worshippers. This is the reason why Aule's Dwarves are granted independent life and Melkor's various attempts at creaturecraft are not. Melkor can't create a world because he can't give up control. Poor Melkor.

I remembered the Dwarf creation story, but I completely forgot that it was also the catalyst for tree-spirts and Ents. Yavanna is worried that, because Aule hid his work from her, the Dwarves will not love her own works (plants and animals) and be careless of them. Then she finds out that Eru intends for all the Children to 'have dominion' and do whatever they feel with trees and the earth and other living things, and she's crushed, naturally.

“All my works are dear to me,” she tells Manwe. " 'Is it not enough that Melkor should have marred so many? Shall nothing that I have devised be free from the dominion of others? [. . . ] Would that the trees might speak on behalf of all things that have roots, and punish those that wrong them!'”

Last week, egelantier brought a Silmarillion parody to my attention that seems not to have been translanted into English. egelantier, is this the cover?
zvirm

The only English translation I could find was on the Tolkien Forums, posted by Daniel/Gopblin in 2010:


"I write not for glory, but for fun"
Barkov, Onegin

The Music of Ainur

Eru the One, who was called "Eluvatar" in Arda, always existed. We don't know what was he doing while he was alone for such a long time, but we can surmise that there was nothing sacred for him, because he created Ainur, the first sacred ones, before he created anything else. He suggested that Ainur start singing instead of just hanging there in the emptiness, since theres nothing else to do anyway. At first they blabbered and mixed words, but soon the chorus got it together and tried to sing "Oh winter winter", but Eluvatar happened to dislike Russian folk songs. He told them: "I want you to sing something that would unfold my soul and fold it back up, something by Rammstein maybe, or say "Yesterday" is a cute song too".

And so the voices of Ainur, like flutes and saxophones, drums and violins, "Fender" guitars and "Yamaha" amps, like countless Pyatnitsky choirs, started to sing the great song. Never since has there been a concert this cool, although they say that "Monsters of Rock - 09" will be cooler, and will end the world.
The Eluvatar was sitting there and enjoying the song, not finding anything to ***** about for a while, but Melkor started to weave his own images into the music - while the choir was tearfully asking while she had to go, he was screaming "Toxic" at the top of his lungs.

Melkor had the most powerful amp and speakers of all Ainur, so those floating in space next to him inadvertedly picked up the screams of "What's up, I got Patrone in my cup!". Upon hearing the screwup, Eluvatar rose and with a fatherly smile started a new song, and it had new strength and new beauty. But the beautiful words about broken hallelujah were once again mixed with screams of "One Boy, One Girl" - and although there were no boys or girls among the Ainur, Melkor was getting the upper hand again.
Then Eluvatar rose again, and his face was stern. He raised his right hand, and laid it on the keyboad of the reserve synthetiser "Korg-01-MX", and among the chaos a third theme arose, and the ultrasound repeated with it "Where the children of tomorrow dream a wind... A wind of change.." and sadness mixed with love in that song. But Melkor shouted "Put you hood up, Represent Yo Sh*t, Muthaf*cka!" - and there was little harmony in that, but a lot of noise and raw testosterone. Enuvatar rose for the third time, and his face was horrible. He rose both hands, quoth "What a retard!" and pulled the plug, shutting down everything. Afterwards, Eluvatar said: "You know what? First I thought we could just get some dancers and a light ball, but since I'm a god, I'd rather give you a planet, and let you do whatever you just sang on there. But know that since I'm sort of your daddy, everything you do would be sort of my work. And even if one of you will try to screw with it - we won't say who, even though it will be you, Melkor - even that will be for the better. Here are the tickets, here's the moving allowance. Those not departing to their new assignments in 24 hours will be fined. The lists are up on the left. Start working, comrades!" This speech surprised everyone, and Melkor most of all. "Damn, - thought Melkor, - you try and try, and then the old guy says that all you do is to his benefit. What's the freaking point then?". But after thinking it over he understood that Eru essentially absolved him of resposibility, and afterwards always said "To the glory of Eluvatar for all time - Amen!" before doing something particularly evil.

And so the great works of the Valar have started in the counless forgotten aeons, and Melkor worked too, and few were the days when he didn't do at least 10% more than Party Plan required of him. But he was working hard out of selfish interests, so soon he was denounced as cheater, saboteur, and brown-noser. After an example was made of him in court and at the whipping square he was demoted and reassigned to work in the outlying space. He obeyed at first, although he did harbor some resentment in his soul, but once he sneaked a peak over the fence on the inner constructiuon site, and saw that Valar are walking the earth in male and female forms in all their beauty and glory, and that the earth has become a garden of pleasures for them (the legends don't specify exactly which pleasures). And he attacked Arda in all his shining magnificence, and the flame of his eyes was deathly cold - it's unclear how he managed that one, and his overall appearance was akin to an Mt. Tolbachik during an eruption. Elves know little of those times, since the only source are the Valar themselves, and they dislike talking about it - so we can conclude that in this conflict Melkor's siblings suffered more defeats that they want forgotten then victories that they want remembered. The war was waged on a planetary scale, and the opponent's action were similar to kindergarden kids fighting for control of the sandbox.


With any luck my head will be clearer in a few days, and next week's Silmarillion Sunday will have more Silmarillion in it.

Comments

( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
egelantier
Feb. 15th, 2015 01:42 pm (UTC)
...wow, i absolutely missed this post, just found it randomly. sorry about that! yes, that's the cover, although i'm not sure when it managed to get published or even GET a cover.

and that's a very nice translation, too! i've reread the whole thing after we discussed it, and was musing at how it's probably not very easy to translate, since it relies very heavily at soviet/early post-soviet imagery and language a lot for the effect. but they went the route of replacing the cultural references, which is cool.
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )

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