The second episode of Game of Thrones' final season was filled with poignant moments, as everyone at Winterfell took the evening to contemplate their mortality and make the most of what may well be their last night alive. While Brienne (Gwendoline Christie) getting knighted was the obvious highlight, the song Podrick (Daniel Portman) sang to the group likely hit home for book readers, who already understood the meaning behind the tune and began to piece together what it's inclusion in the episode might mean for some of our characters.
"Jenny's Song," which is now available on Spotify, is one of the few songs from George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire series that hadn't been used in the show before. The song is about Jenny of Oldstones, a descendant of the kings of the First Men and the wife of Duncan Targaryen. Duncan was prince to the Iron Throne when he and Jenny fell in love, but when they married against his father, King Aegon's, wishes, Duncan abdicated the throne in order to be with her.
But if you look at the lyrics to "Jenny's Song," which showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss added to from what Martin originally wrote, this is not a joyful love song, but a mournful tune about love that has been lost.
High in the halls of the kings who are gone
Jenny would dance with her ghosts
The ones she had lost and the ones she had found
And the ones who had loved her the most
The ones who'd been gone for so very long
She couldn't remember their names
They spun her around on the damp, cold stone
Spun away her sorrow and pain
And she never wanted to leave
This is because while Duncan gave up his throne with noble intentions, his decision ultimately led to nothing but tragedy. "The Prince of Dragonflies loved Jenny of Oldstones so much he cast aside a crown, and Westeros paid the prince in corpses," Barristan Selmy explained in A Dance with Dragons. You see, because Duncan stepped aside, the Mad King Aerys became next in line and we all know how well that went. In addition, Duncan, King Aegon, and several others died in a fire at the Targaryen castle Summerhall, a fire reportedly caused by Aegon's desire to bring dragons back to the seven kingdoms. And it was in the midst of this tragic fire that Daenerys' (Emilia Clarke) brother and Jon's (Kit Harington) father, Rhaegar Targaryen, was born.
It doesn't take a genius to see the connection between Jon and Daenerys' current predicament and Duncan and Jenny's tale. But if the inclusion of "Jenny's Song" is foreshadowing, which it likely is — don't forget when Bronn (Jerome Flynn) sang "Rains of Castamere" ahead of Blackwater — it doesn't bode well for anyone, really, if Jon does decide to step aside so Dany can take the Iron Throne.
Then again, we don't even know if Jon, Dany, or the Iron Throne will even be around much longer now that the Night King has reached Winterfell.
Game of Thrones airs Sundays at 9/8c on HBO.