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[page 13] _HARRY WARNER_, _JR._ 423 Summit Avenue, Hagerstown, Maryland 21740 I thought that Ruth Berman made a shrewd choice when she linked the Tolkien poem with the Hebrew folk tune. It shouldn't be hard to memorize the melody by rote and it lies comfortably within the range of the average voice, two qualities that have been missing from some of the newly composed music I've seen to Tolkien poetry. Incidentally, anyone who is interested in more sophisticated musical versions of the Ring poetry mignt like to see how Brahms handled a set of poems vaguely reminiscent of those Tolkien wrote. He composed for voice and piano 15 poems by Ludwig Tieck, a German author. They were intersperced @interspersed@ originally by Tieck in his prose version of a 12th century Provence legend about a young man's adventures in the age of chivalry. The voice sings fairly simple melodies, frequently sounding as if it were derived from folk melody, while the piano provides quite complex accompaniments. Dietrich Fischer Dieskau recorded the whole batch on a Decca lp that has been out of the catalog for a long time but really ardent thinkers about music for Tolkien might find it in a library or college record collections, and it could conceivably be available on one of the European labels that are imported by large stores but aren't listed in the Schwann catalog. The original German poems have much more the flavor of Tolkien than the English translation; but there is the major difference that Tieck was writing about a struggle for the sake of a woman's love instead of an effort to save a people from evil and the songs reflect this romantic goal in a way that you wont find in Tolkien's poems. [page 14] I wouldn't risk any remarks on the controversies over Tolkien languages and penmanship under any circumstances. But one thing occurred to me, time after time as I read through this issue. The arrival of war would kill Tolkien fandom before it affected any other forms of fanac. Everyone mentioned in any Tolkien fanzine would be behind bars as soon as a postal censor saw all those squiggles and unknown words and decided that the whole thing was a clumsy vehicle for concealing the transmission of classified information. Both Ned Brooks and Banks Mebane give me the strangest sense that Tolkien was an author who lived and died centuries ago, on whom modern scholarship is concentrating in an effort to unearth long-forgotten secrets about meaning. Their rescarch is uncannily like some of the investigation that has been proceeding for the past couple of centuries into Shakespeare and the variations in the earliest editionsof @editions of@ his plays. If by some chance Tolkien should be recognized eventually as one of the great writers of all time, studies like these might be the keys toward unlocking mysteries that would be almost impossible to solve a couple of centuries from now. Neither, I notice, mentions the luxury edition of Tolkien that is supposed to exist; but if there is such a thing, I assume that it would be identical in text and pagination with this or that hardcover version, and would vary only in the type of binding and perhaps quality of paper. -/Right you are. Same book, including paper, as the other hardcover editions, black quality binding with gold lettering, and a little gold placemarking ribbon, and it comes in a box with illustrations on it by Pauline Baynes./- The only Hollywood figure whom I'd really want to see tested as a producer or director of Tolkien fiction is Charlie Chaplin. I don't mean that I'd like to have him turn them into comic movies. But I believe that Chaplin is one of the few Hollywood figures who had the intensity of purpose and the courage to be different, to avoid the stereotypes and obvious ways of appealing to the public. If he were young enough, if financing could be worked out, if he were interested, I believe that he would get into the spirit of the Tolkien story and make it something as distinguished and as different from the comedies that we think of when we think of Chaplin as his last two or three full-length movies were different in theme and manner from the slapstick that made him famous.