Rum, Sodomy, and the Lash: Pick Two (aghrivaine) wrote,
Rum, Sodomy, and the Lash: Pick Two

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Good words, used well

When good writers write well, and I read it, I feel both smaller and bigger.

Bigger because I've stumbled on something that expands who I am, my understanding of the world, and the words that I use to know the world. Thought occurs in words; feral children raised without language do not and not invoke perception and logic in the same way that others can. The more I know of words, the more I can feel them, order them, sense them, use them - the more my place in the world expands. Maybe it's the growth of sorrow, of joy, of lust, of anger -- but always it is also the expanse of wonder. When I am really, truly in love, I've been content just to watch the object of my affection do any little thing; her smallest movement is entrancing. That's how I feel about well-turned phrases, about beautifully constructed stories - about that "oh god yes, it's just like that!" feeling one gets when absorbing the work of a real master.

And also I am smaller. I think of this fine writing, this amazing work - and I think also of my small, insignificant life. Of the stupid toys on my desk, of my thousand trivial obsessions and quotidian distractions. There is nothing grand about it, and I feel reduced. No - not reduced, but rather - put properly into my place, which is insignificant. The universe is vast and large and human deeds in it are of concern only to us - and even in that tiny sliver of what is real, all that I have done accounts for little, as I am too easily distracted by nonsense.

Oh, for the discipline to turn away from this, from going and getting another slice of picture, of noodling around with photographs, from fiddling around online. But here I am, fiddling around on line -- smaller by the minute. But yes, I certainly can appreciate the vlaue of that more and more, as years go by; thanks to good words, used well.

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