Friday, October 03, 2008

When Tolkien Does the Blogging

I came across this quote today. At first, it didn't make sense. And then I realized that maybe speed-reading when I'm sleep-deprived is unwise. I was pretty much only absorbing every other word.

Here's what fascinates me. Tolkien wrote this to his son. Do fathers and sons really correspond this way? Do you? Please, gentlemen, enlighten me. Do you have heart-to-hearts with your dads about "guiding stars"?

If not, perhaps you should.
How quickly an intelligent woman can be taught, grasp his ideas, see his point — and how (with rare exceptions) they can go no further, when they leave his hand, or when they cease to take a personal interest in him. But this is their natural avenue to love. Before the young woman knows where she is (and while the young man, when he exists, is still sighing) she may actually 'fall in love'. Which for her, an unspoiled natural young woman, means that she wants to become the mother of the young man's children, even if that desire is by no means clear to her or explicit. And then things are going to happen: and they may be very painful and harmful, if things go wrong. Particularly if the young man only wanted a temporary guiding star and divinity (until he hitches his wagon to a brighter one), and was merely enjoying the flattery of sympathy nicely seasoned with the titillation of sex — all quite innocent, of course, and worlds away from 'seduction'.

....Don't be misled by the fact [women] are more 'sentimental' in words — freer with 'darling', and all that. They don't want a guiding star. They may idealize a plain young man into a hero; but they don't really need any such glamour either to fall in love or to remain in it.

~From a letter to his son, Michael Tolkien 6-8 March 1941, The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien
Freer with the world "darling"? Hmm. Perhaps I should update my vocabulary choices to make Tolkien more accurate.

No comments: