Darry Man

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About Darry Man

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    Plowman's Keep
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    Feasting, fighting, and dreaming of a Targaryen restoration

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  1. Willas strikes a bit of that Fisher King vibe. He has a lame leg, he hangs out in a garden (floating down the Mander, fishing maybe?), and he is likely to become the lord of the Reach. I can see the Reach becoming desolate after the unrelenting ironborn attacks and in need for a Percevalean knight on a quest to obtain some sort of relic in an attempt to save it and Willas too. I'm thinking it will be Brienne, perhaps, or Jaime. This will all come to naught because it's ASOIAF and there are no happy endings. Garland will play the role reminiscent of the honest and gallant Sir Gawain, who fought and beheaded the enchanted Green Knight. Again, this will turn out to be an inverting of the trope and end in horrible tragedy because GRRM.
  2. In AGOT, Osha explains to Bran what happened to the children of the forest at the signing of the Pact: This suggests that the realms of men included everywhere but the deep forests. However, while it is shown clearly that men are in regular contact with the deep forests, there is little evidence of the children within these woods. Since the beginning of the timeline of ASOIAF, there are no credible references of children of the wolfswood in the north, in the haunted forest north of the Wall, in the rainwood in the stormlands or elsewhere. Perhaps this is because the deep woods was not a specific geographical location, but an anatomical one. Here's Asha Greyjoy being forced out of Deepwood Motte in ADWD: Where is the heart of the tree? Deep in its wood. Was the Pact simply an acknowledgement by First Men that heart trees were the homes of the old gods?
  3. Kinda disappointed that LmL didn't bring up "Bull + Weir = Bulwer" when discussing ol' Black Jack, may the Father judge him justly.
  4. No, thank you. This was interesting. Looking forward to seeing more.
  5. Thanks for starting this topic. I was directed here after writing about the parallels between Reek II and Jon V in ADWD. It shows how both Moat Cailin and Mole's Town are symbolically linked, particularly with the part of them being analogues to subterranean caverns under weirwoods. So, to add to all the other examples you have, you may want to include Moat Cailin. There is no weirwood tree there now, but given its associations with the children of the forest, there was likely one there before. The ruins indicate the symbolic destruction of a weirwood, and the black interior is definitely symbolic of a cave, complete with a smoldering fire and living-dead inhabitants. I thought of a couple more examples when reading your post. Abandoned holdfast near the God's Eye A tree set alight during Armory Lorch's storming of the walls A spear thrown at Yoren on the walls Arya, Gendry and others escaping through the tunnel Great pyramid of Meereen: Man-made mountain dungeons dragons in the dungeons dragons chained to the walls of the dungeons Dany finding solace when visiting the dragons chained to the walls of the dungeons
  6. Thanks. Yeah, I had noticed that the chestnut was by the bridge, whereas Robb's army created a bridge of planks through the Neck as well. I was definitely aware of this symbolic relationship. I've heard of these parallels of various hollow hills generally but I need to read this definitive study now. I had previously thought that there had to be a weirwood above these hills to create the magical cave, but seeing this feature at both Mole's Town and Moat Cailin has opened up the possibilities. Now this is something I had not considered. Theon as a Westerosi Hermes, travelling to and from the underworld. I like it!
  7. The connection between fire and weirwoods is becoming more clear, which was something I was struggling with for a little while now. For example, while lightning/hammer symbolism was apparent, having a concrete hypothesis on how these transform (ie ground zero) brings further plausibility to their actual purpose. That, and the fact that I'm starting to grasp these concepts more easily through reading these forums and trying to contribute my own thoughts. I was writing about a couple of dark caves mimicking a weirwood cavern, and lo! LmL produces an essay explaining this. This educational development makes these essays much more enjoyable.
  8. You do realize this entire forum is dedicated to a series of 5+ novels, three novellas, several other short stories, one companion volume of in-world history, and a television series going onto its 7th season, don't you?
  9. This is probably my favorite essay yet. Fantastic. It gets my brain-blood flowing. At risk of pimping my own writing too much, I can't help but relate this essay to the bit of comparative analysis I just published today on the forums: Here, GRRM is creating a linear parallel between Reek and Jon. Given what you have just published, I cannot help but note that both Moat Cailin and the destroyed Mole's Town are analogous to the burnt weirwood, complete with relative references to ash, embers, a fish inside a dark cave, the living dead, etc. Perhaps this is also a good time to mention that the word "Cailin" is apparently an old Irish name meaning "young maiden".
  10. One of my most enjoyable pleasures in reading (by which I mean "re-re-re-re-reading") ASOIAF is seeing how GRRM drops little symbolic clues in subsequent chapters. How significant these clues are to the over-arching narrative can certainly be debated, but this happens far too often to be a coincidence in many cases. It is likely that the intention is to link certain characters across the chapters in some fashion to show a similar character arc or symbolic resonance between events. Case in point come from the Reek II chapter and then subsequent Jon V chapter in ADWD. Read together, the symbolic parallels lunge out at the reader, just begging to be noticed and taken in. In both chapters, Theon and Jon are about to fetch some men. In Reek's case, he needs to get the Ironborn out of Moat Cailin to open up the land route to the North for his father's bannermen and the Freys, while Jon needs to recruit wildlings who have taken refuge in Mole's Town as a means to gain more spears manning the Wall. Theon travels alone with a peace banner and a parchment from Ramsey Bolton guaranteeing safe passage for the ironborn. He is a changed man: Jon is not alone. He has his fellow Nights Watchmen, including Bowen Marsh and Dolorous Edd, taking with him wagons of foodstuffs to entice the wildlings. Before he leaves, he notes the stew left to him by Dolorous Edd the night before: Jon Snow is also a changed man. He's no longer a green boy or a young steward. He is now Lord Commander Snow, and it is he who gives the orders. Theon approaches Moat Cailin and notes the ruins: Jon approaches Mole's Town likewise and notes another set of three: Jon then enters the ruins of Mole's Town: Moat Cailin's towers dominate its landscape, but once Theon is inside, they are as if in a subterranean cave. A dank, smelly, stinky, soiled cave: Jon senses the wildlings rising from their subterranean dwelling: Out of mercy, Theon kills the ironborn leader, Ralf Kenning, who was discovered dying by some awful poison. The rest of the men aren't doing so well either in the hall: Jon notes that the wildlings are also in bad shape, and leaderless: Theon offers a choice: Jon offers a choice: Theon encounters resistance: Jon encounters resistance: Theon gains a champion: Jon gains a champion: The rest follow Theon's champion: The rest follow Jon's champion: Theon leads the ironborn north from Moat Cailin, though their fate was inevitable. Want to guess how many fighters Jon led north from Mole's Town? And like the ill-fated ironborn, the Night's Watch new recruits will be hung like scarecrows to face the winds of winter to come. Yes, these are excerpts from two consecutive chapters in the same book. Beautiful.
  11. The Duality of Fire in Mythology

    Yeah, I remember seeing you discussing this theme. Love it.
  12. The Duality of Fire in Mythology

    That's the ultimate question, is it not? Recall the moment in AGOT when Dany encounters the Undying: I think the elemental duality in ASOIAF is all a ruse. We like to pick sides in conflicts, black vs white, good vs evil. We are entertained and entranced by the beautiful gallantry of fantasy, of magic and wizards and knights and dragons, but in the end, we are all dead. How we get to this end, either through fire or ice, is the interesting part, and why we read these books. Ultimately, however, our resplendent white and black is, behind it all, just plain, old, splintery grey.
  13. The Duality of Fire in Mythology

    I understand this. A corrupted greenseer doesn't mean that a greenseer is pure of heart or that a corrupted or transformed greenseer is necessarily evil. The ebony thrones we are the LoN, Dany's Meereenese bench, Doran's wheelchair, and Dany's palaquin. All these references are quite specific, especially given the ebony/persimmon context.
  14. The Duality of Fire in Mythology

    If the LoN is a corrupted (or transformed) version of a greenseer as represented by the moon over the sun, then it could be supported by my theory that persimmon ebony is a symbolic antithesis of the weirwood. The LoN in the HotUD is carved out of ebony and sits on a throne (also presumably made from ebony), which runs counter to greenseers sitting on a weirwood throne.