Yes, on this day we reflect on the passing of a legend – J.R.R Tolkien – the author of The Hobbit – and what was originally intended to be its sequel – The Lord of the Rings. He also authored many other books about Middle Earth, his own creation, like the daunting Silmariion (I have made a third of the way through). He came up with Elvish and told of Dwarves and Orcs and Men and Elves, and Hobbits of course.

I think he might have liked this day being National Blueberry Popsicle Day, though they might have made it something else in Britain. After all he came up with the concept of Second Breakfast, and lembas (crumbs on his jacket1). You never saw rings the same way after reading his work. He loved nature and hated war, having been a participant in WWI.

His opus was completed just a short time before I was born in the mid-50’s What he would say about today’s world I can’t imagine. He died when I was almost in my senior year of high school, and I remember the chaos and the relative primitiveness least for computers- of those days.

He had a way with words and bringing life to a land nobody ever knew. I remember the trepidation everyone felt about the effort at the turn of this century to convert his words to images and motion. I think he would have been pleased with Peter Jackson’s work and the cast he gathered to make it so.

He was a legend and an inspiration to many. I particularly embrace the vision and works of a local Seattleite – Terry Brooks – with his world of Shannara. Nobody can duplicate a master, only reflect the genius and invite us to share his imagination. Steven Donaldson, in a darker realm, also was a world creator inspired by Tolkien.

And he brought a lot of us together to enjoy his vision and stories. We do that, to a lesser degree, even now. And we share a lot of great memories – and quotes, of course.

Thank you, Professor, for inspiring us. We will never be the same.