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    Warning Will Robinson!

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    R'Cat sent me here to Kobayashi Maru's and the post about his brother's imminent passing.

    In the last few short years I have lost some major actors from my play. Parts that, most likely, I will never be able to recast. This month, in a twelve day span, both of my grandfathers passed. One of them I had met recently, (don't ask, funky familial dynamics ok?), and one that I grew up with. The one I had grown up with hit hard of course, but upon recently meeting my paternal grandfather I knew, simply KNEW, that I had made a huge mistake not coming earlier and getting to know this man.

    Before them one of my best friends Bill passed, peacefully, in his sleep, which completely blew the pool we had going on him.

    Even before that though there was my friend Charley. (Before that was my grandma I grew up with, and while that hurt it was rather expected)

    Charley was a bard. I have written about Bill and Charley, and one of my grampa's here, (in depth I was told regarding gramps) but I covered Char in somewhat of a cursory manner.

    That won't change. But like I said, he was a bard, and could sing and tell stories and had an almost encyclopedic knowledge of history, especially the history of the celts and Scotland and, indeed, all the isles. He was a huge Tolkien fan, and could recite the LOTR (and the Hobbit), as if he were reading it aloud, never missing a beat.

    Tolkien wrote a poem called Bilbo's last song, and one year, while Char was away in the Army and couldn't get home for the holidays he set that poem to music.

    I don't have the tune for you, but I do have the words. It is, without a doubt, one of my all time favorite songs, ever, and has been, along with a piper, been heard at every funeral I have gone to since Char passed.

    Today, I dedicate this to Kobayashi Maru's brother. May they find Peace within the choices the Lord lays before them.

    Bilbo's Last Song

    Day is ended, dim my eyes,
    but journey long before me lies.
    Farewell, friends! I hear the call.
    The ship's beside the stony wall.
    Foam is white and waves are grey;
    beyond the sunset leads my way.
    Foam is salt, the wind is free;
    I hear the rising of the Sea.

    Farewell, friends! The sails are set,
    the wind is east, the moorings fret.
    Shadows long before me lie,
    beneath the ever-bending sky,
    but islands lie behind the Sun
    that I shall raise ere all is done;
    lands there are to west of West,
    where night is quiet and sleep is rest.

    Guided by the Lonely Star,
    beyond the utmost harbour-bar,
    I'll find the heavens fair and free,
    and beaches of the Starlit Sea.
    Ship, my ship! I seek the West,
    and fields and mountains ever blest.
    Farewell to Middle-earth at last.
    I see the Star above my mast!

    -- J. R. R. Tolkien
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