From "Tolkien: A Cultural Phenomenon" (2003) by Brian Rosebury

This text is reproduced exclusively for the purposes of discussion on The One

[page 48]

‘The Dead can’t be really there! Is it some devilry hatched in the Dark Land?’

‘Who knows? Sméagol doesn’t know’, answered Gollum. ‘You cannot reach them, you cannot touch them. We tried once, yes, precious. I tried once; but you cannot reach them. Only shapes to see, perhaps, not to touch. No precious! All dead.’

[page 49] Sam looked darkly at him and shuddered again, thinking that he guessed why Sméagol had tried to touch them. ‘Well, I don’t want to see them’, he said. ‘Never again! Can’t we get on and get away?’

‘Yes, yes’, said Gollum. ‘But slowly, very slowly. Very carefully! Or hobbits go down to join the Dead ones and light little candles. Follow Sméagol! Don’t look at lights!’ (TT, 235-6)