the truth is, my love affair with words existed even before i did, or at least it feels that way at times; a generous gift of agony and ecstasy bestowed upon me by another realm entirely.
it will take the totality of my life to account for and unwrap each hidden morsel and gem: why don’t ‘done’ and ‘tone’ rhyme? how come ‘disguise’ and ‘ties’ do?
these thoughts fascinate and delight me, even as they overwhelm, forget about trying to articulate them. see, just then, ‘AR-tic-u-lATE’, why does it feel so gratifying to say such words? to waste hours picking and choosing words from our tiny shared word pool, to express or communicate, appropriately, clearly, our feelings. why is it then that these precious words we’ve picked, from this measly collection of curved and straight lines, generally end up falling so short?

the part i don’t really care for is the grammar; how can a set of rules and exceptions set the stage for creativity and individuality to dance? in my experience, it can’t. it’s the heady stuff, the nuance of semantics, the abstraction of thought that make a language or a word worth speaking.

isn’t it something though how when i speak the word ‘dog’ it will never once bring my childhood pet, pokey, to your mind but only rather your beloved pup jake or the bite of some nameless canine whose memory is buried at the surface of your wrist there.

one word, three letters, an emordnilap of god; yes, it will surely take all nine of my lives to think these thoughts through.

by: stephanie santos-grant


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