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Healing the Ring

Dreamed 1984/8/22 by Chris Wayan

Rings are given to some.
Dark, heavy, laden with fire,
bearing a terrible ruby.
They confer dread powers, at a cost:
fanning the bearer's hunger. It's called
Devilsfire. We burn inside with longing
unknown; unknowable perhaps.

You must fight the urge to lash
out, seeking, for you'll burst
into fiery bolts of act;
and each deed gnaws the body
as fire chars wood. But subtly:

At first, pride: your eyes pool with wise.
And those fine wrinkles show maturity.
But the slow fire eats on, imperceptibly,
until all flesh is ash.

So face desire, set limits, use the Ring-
fire against itself! Burn out the wrong
that cunning Forger deep-inset.
Reformed, reforged, the Ring
though weaker, will be clean--
manifesting wishes against the Maker's plan!

I was given a Ring. Burnt and pitted came,
by the great heat of the Ringlord's hand.
I've fought this ring an endless now, with some
success, though I buy it with great pain:
the Ring has blushed from dark iron to gold.
In the struggle, though, I lost the stone.
Hoped I'd tame its blaze to a life-hue
or spirit-clear, but it stayed dire flame,
heat-shattered at last in the fight.

Friends call me Ring-Bearer, for I came
so far. But our bout's not done.
The incantation to ground the Ring's
nature when healed and whole,
the way to Wish it, still eludes; lies
latent in the gold.
A wedding ring with no promise,
no name.

As yet. As yet. But when our battle's done,
letters in the ancient script will shine
in golden fire. And they will not declaim:

One Ring to rule them all,
and in the Darkness bind them.

FOUR NOTES, YEARS LATER



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