“The Riddle of Strider” by J.R.R. Tolkien is an interesting as much as inspiring poem. It appears twice in Tolkien’s very famous fantasy novel “The Lord of the Rings“. I noted that the poem is also published elsewhere with a somewhat different title “All That Is Gold Does Not Glitter“. Interestingly, this first line “All that is gold does not glitter” is Tolkien’s variant or modification of popular proverb “All that glitters is not gold“, and it carries a totally different meaning to the proposition it offers. The poem actually alludes to the plot and events of Tolkien’s novel; and specifically the last two lines predict the rise of Argorn to become the king of Gondor and Arnor. Even if the reader does not know the background or has not read Tolkien’s novel, the poem, in my view, still transcends the same powerful and inspirational message – hence it is one of my favorite poems. Enjoy.
“The Riddle of Strider” or “All That Is Gold Does Not Glitter“
“All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.
From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king.”
- J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings.
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