Antipodean Writer: Fingolfin’s Fall: The Last Duel


Fingolfin vs Melkor

The Dark Lord stands: an ebon tower
Looming tall in that evil hour.
Without device, his massive targe
Jet-black, blots out the sky, so large
That buckler is. His mighty mace –
Called Grond – is brought up to his face
Then raised to crush the brazen foe
Standing upon the plains below.

Fingolfin stands. But suddenly
He is not there. Fast-footed, he
Leaps sideways, thrusting with his blade –
Ringil – like glittering steel it made
In Valar-flesh deep-gouging slice.
The Dark Lord screams! Then in a trice
The hordes of Angband on their face
Fall trembling. What painful disgrace
Their Dark Lord suffers on that day
Dueling Fingolfin!
Still the play
Continues. Grond up to the skies
Is raised and dropped. Fingolfin flies
And leaps aside. A noisome pit
Is smashed open and out of it
Issue belchings of fire and smoke.
The King essays another stroke.
The Dark Lord screams! Then in dismay
All Angband’s hordes again that day
Tremble face-down, aghast! The shame!
One elf their Dark Lord does defame!

Grond rises, falls. The ground is rent
Again. Again. Fingolfin, spent,
No longer still can leap aside.
Tired he stumbles. But then tried
His strength to strike. With seven blows
He wounded Morgoth. Now he knows
His end is come. Morgoth upheaves
One foot – which like a mountain leaves
The earth below only to rush
Down on Fingolfin so to crush
Him like a worm.
A worm with fangs!
Ice-Ringil glitters: thrusting, clangs
Through heel to hew dark flesh and bone:
The body of the Dark Lord’s throne!
So Morgoth’s blood pours out: night-black,
Smoking to earth, as rushing back
To earth his boot descends to crush
Fingolfin’s life. And now a hush
Over the dueling ground a shroud
Of silence settles. None out loud
Will ask their master: how much pain
Those wounds seven him cause? Refrain
From asking, even from that time:
Whyfor he limps as lamed? A crime
To even think one elf in duel
Could wound Morgoth, their Dark Lord cruel.

Morgoth the body lifts, and breaks
Its bones. Turning, the Dark Lord takes
The corpse, intending then to feed
It to his wolves. Seven wounds bleed
And torment him. His foot-wound, deep
Slows him, limping and halt, to creep
Towards the doors of Angband.
From heaven a swift flight-shadow cast
The movement of an arrow in flight:
Too late the Dark Lord catches sight
Of Thorondor, the Eagle King:
Whose claws already are raking
And gouging Morgoth’s face! He screams
In agony! All Angband seems
To groan aloud its master’s pain!
Morgoth’s loss is Thorondor’s gain:
The eagle from the Dark Lord tore
Fingolfin’s corpse. Then Thorondor
In eye-blink speed ascends each height
To vanish swiftly from their sight.

Morgoth afflicted with grim pain
Descends. Nor from his throne again
Comes up into the light and air
But sits enthroned upon his chair
Of darkness, with his ravaged face.
A win – costing him much disgrace.

Thorondor flew. His talons bore
The High-King gently from all war
Up to his rest, eternal sleep.
His body now does vigil keep
On mountains above Gondolin
Inside its cairn where Fingolfin
Was laid with honour.
Such the cost
The elves recall, mourning what’s lost.

This poem was first posted on Antipodean Writer.

Antipodean Writer


  1. Braag /

    Love to see the treatment of the some of the lesser known Silmarilian topics. Well done. Bravo.

  2. Rucagorn of Evernight /

    Well done friend. Epic scene *chills*
    If we ever see this at big screen…. *shivers*

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