Words are beautiful tools. When we take care in using them, they do their best to carry our thoughts, desires and dreams carefully intact from our minds and hearts and give them shapes that others can see. They get help from the eyes, those lovely and exposing orbs. And from the movements that our bodies send out like beacons, of which we are often unaware, in its attempt to punctuate our passions, feelings and even to betray our deceptions. The voice chimes in, obediently saying the words it has been given but adding its own flare of breath, tone and lyricism. There is a beauty to the entire poetry of expression, but like an intricately scored orchestral piece, something gets lost without all of the instruments…
Something happened along the way. Maybe it was the invention of the telephone, when suddenly our voices became disembodied solo performers for those at a distance. Words and inflection took on greater meaning and weight yet, unlike a well thought out letter, expression became instantaneous. Or maybe it was the lawyers. The word of law, the contract, the picking apart of words and their exact meanings until the written word itself was left with no nuance or varied interpretation. These tightly bound words gained a power that stripped the language of emotion, subtly and beauty. Add to this the jingle dialect of a commercial culture, where language was manipulated, simplified and twisted until it became something only useful to convey the most superficial of ideas…
And now here we sit separated by keyboards and screens, each of us only words typed into texts, instant messages and posts. Connecting with more people than ever before, staying in touch with those we once might have lost, yet too often relegating ourselves to one instrument with fewer notes than can convey all of the intricacies, passion and brilliance within us….
Nothing can replace the full orchestra that is each and every one of us. While I sit alone, playing these notes, enjoying their sound, I will remember that it is only a small part of my composition and will not hesitate to rouse the full orchestra whenever I get the chance!
- the South