Book & Poem reviews

Tonight I’m going to revisit some thoughts I wrote a few days ago…

  • Finally finished volume I (The Fellowship of the Ring) of the The Lord of the Rings — It is the greatest book I have ever read, next to the Bible…. ok, it’s better reading than the Bible, but of course I’m reading a translation of the Bible so it’s not really a fair literary contest.

    How can I begin to describe the book? I shan’t except to say that it is magical, and I’ll be reading it again as soon as I finish the next two volumes.

    Also, here is an excellent website that discusses Tolkien’s books: greenbooks.theonering.net

    Ok, one more thing… as much as I like the LOTR movie, I can now say that it was far too short and left out way too much. Some of my favorite parts of the book were completely left out. Folks who said the movie was too long, need to read the books. Then they’ll understand.

  • After reading Slaughterhouse Five, I’ve changed my mind. War is never right. Before I read this book, I was a just-war pacifist, believing that war in principle is wrong, but there might be an extreme exception for “just wars.”

    After reading that book though, I now believe that the term “just war” is an oxymoron. There is nothing just about war. Even in what most folks call history’s “most just war,” World War II, there were such horrible attrocities committed by the “good guys:” Dresden (where more died from the horrible agony of being burned alive by flaming jellied gasoline than in all of the atom bomb attacks), Hiroshima & Nagasaki (where the horrors of atomic warfare were unleashed, and civilians targeted in violation of International law and all that is right and good), and in the looting of holocaust victims’ gold by allied soldiers. (recently uncovered by the NY Times)

    If WWII could not be conducted justly, then what war could possibly be waged justly… no war. War is by very definion evil and wrong. Maybe I am an absolutist, but it seems pretty clear to me now.

  • On the Ani DiFranco poem I posted a few days ago, I have had second thoughts. A friend called me on it, as she thought it wasn’t that great. In re-reading it I have to agree with her. For the most part I agree with Ani’s political sentiments, but the exectution of the poem was rather weak. It had good moments (I loved the imagery of trains, but of course I love trains.. and of course I always love kicks at Bush’s blue blood privilidged frat boy background, but of course I’ve never cared much for frat boys.), but those moments couldn’t prevail over a poem that was poorly executed. Overall it rambled too much and said too much and in doing so said too little. I also have no idea what her lauding of abortionists had to do with the meat of her poem. It just wasn’t relevant.

    Hehehe, listen to me talking about rambling…. I’m sure my regular readers think I’m the world’s biggest hyppocrite, seeing as a habitual rambling bloggist. 😉