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Category Archives: words

Last Words

vulnerability

When Sir Isaac Newton died, he was humble. He said, “I don’t know what I may seem to the world. But as to myself I seem to have been only like a boy playing on the seashore and diverting myself now and then in finding a smoother pebble or a prettier shell than the ordinary, whilst the great ocean of truth lay all undiscovered before me.” **

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If I had to share my last words on a blog, I would still continue to search for meaning and remain a life long learner. There would be less of my words but more of everyone else’s perspective. I would want to comfort others and express empathy by a touch, a smile, eye contact, a tilt of the head, or a laugh. Empathy allows us to use multiple methods of communication and expression with all of our senses, intuition, and feelings.

The spirit of caring, and energy of compassion, is a kindness that transcends words. No act of kindness is too small; no recognition and appreciation for it undeserved.

Life is a continual purpose of awareness and seeking out the meaning and depth beyond the superficiality of words. A look, a promise, a vow are lifelong pursuits that outlive the futile attempt to put our deepest thoughts and grandest intentions into words.

I would thank those who have read my blog and allowed me to share my thoughts. I have been, and continue to be, so appreciative of the comments and heartfelt thoughts and responses shared with me. Finding other like-minded people in a very large world is a treasure. I would remain an idealist and hope to find other means of expression.

Speak while you can but be sure to find ways to listen to others’ words, and therein, create relationships and memories that last with them. They can be the storytellers when we cease to speak for ourselves.

Purpose-of-life_Emerson
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Thank you for stopping by and allowing me to express myself.
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** Note: the source for most of these is the fantastic reference book Last Words of Notable People: Final Words of More than 3500 Noteworthy People Throughout History by William B. Brahms.

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“A writer is like a tuning fork: We respond when we’re struck by something. The thing is to pay attention, to be ready for radical empathy. If we empty ourselves of ourselves we’ll be able to vibrate in synchrony with something deep and powerful. If we’re lucky we’ll transmit a strong pure note, one that isn’t ours, but which passes through us. If we’re lucky, it will be a note that reverberates and expands, one that other people will hear and understand.”

Reading

What crackling energy and divinely given craft inspires writers to create works of fiction that move us beyond suspended disbelief into vast and varied emotions? Their words and images are powerful and remain with us long after we have finished a book. We are writers and storytellers; that is why we share our words. Somehow, a writer can create a world that surpasses anything else in our minds and moves us to deep passions, sorrow, love and longing.

My reading is voracious. On average, I read two to three novels a week. In those binge-reading times, I have spent eight hours on a book so I can finish it and reach the critical closure. There is a dance for those swayed by words; savoring a book to taste each word on our tongues like melted whiskey and chocolate. Or, a need to read more, and more, in hopes of swallowing the words as quickly as we can to grasp and absorb even more of the fiction.

An author has come back into my literary life that has sparked up all of these emotions. Diana Gabaldon was recommended to me almost twenty years ago in a tiny library in Ontario, Canada. The historical fiction, with ties to England and Scotland, certainly held connection to the Commonwealth country where I had first heard about her book. It is a realization when in Canada that English is not just English, but an extension of the Queen’s English, which makes all the difference.

Perhaps that is why the monarchy and passions of love, conflict, and freedoms appealed to me. I too was an Outlander at that time. Whatever the precise reason, the fiction stayed with me. I waited impatiently, like millions of other readers, for the next installment even though it would be years between completed projects.

Now that it is being brought to life on film, I have begun rereading the book series again. This time, I slipped into it easily, like a warm and comforting bath. Mind you, these books are long…Over 7,000 pages, in eight published volumes, stir us to the range of colorful emotions and the bawdy sense of love and adventure. Thousands more pages have been produced in novellas for the clamoring masses of our favorite characters and the Scottish laird and prisoner.

Reading is so solitary and all-consuming that it delivers tremendous empathy for the characters and writer. In actuality, popular authors elicit strong reactions within, and outside of, their books. Diana Gabaldon has achieved sales of more than 25 million books and her book Outlander is #1 on the New York Times bestseller list so many years after she began writing. It is a testament to her writing ability and creative genius that her books have risen to the top so many times.

What power the written word can have and how do the chosen few become authors of acclaim? What makes us react to a book that is over twenty years old? Or, perhaps it continues to grab us because it has shared twenty years of our lives and personal history. Through our ups and downs, fiction sustains us and allows us an escape wherever we may be. Such is the power of a well-written book.

Brought to film by Tall Ship Productions’ Ronald D. Moore and Maril Davis, gorgeously costumed by Terry Dresbach, and lovingly brought to life by the incandescent Sam Heughan and Catriona Balfe, Outlander has captured the hearts and minds of fans all over again. Lovingly, reverently, respectfully and faithfully, the words float in and out of our consciousness as we hear them again in the actors’ timbre. Adapted for television, the screenplay writers work to stay true to the power of the original words and the original vision of Diana Gabaldon’s pen to paper. With such adamant and ardent fans, the Outlander writers have no small task, but endeavor to achieve that separate peace in each episode.

What magic makes us want to carry these stirring words with us and need to share the deep passionate connection with others? There is an alchemy that exists within a writer’s hands to create a book that owns a piece of our soul over time. It is powerful and ephemeral, demanding and urgent, deserving to be written before it scatters away.

Books shape our lives and yet they all begin as one word on a blank page.

There is pleasure in putting words to paper and creating stories that stir our hearts and soothe our brains, shaping our thoughts into cohesive braids of imagination, creativity, fantasy, and drama. Whether a personal musing, or a view of a world not yet seen, a story is a dream of the seed that has not yet taken root.

Being thankful and appreciative of an author is not enough. It is only appropriate that we encourage, celebrate, and support writers and authors. I have great respect for the talented authors whom I know and the many who try to share to enhance the genre. There is no replacement, in any medium, for one who has the gifted ability to use words that conjure bliss within us that we did not know existed.

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Thank you so much for stopping by! It means more than you know.
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Outlander 2014 Outlander 2014

quill and ink pot red

Shakespeare, Lord Byron, Elizabeth Browning, Pearl Buck, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Ernest Hemingway, and Maya Angelou are some of our beloved men and women of letters. A “Man of Letters” is primarily concerned with literary and scholarly arts, the beauty of the written word and the value of humanism.

The concept of Humanism relates not just to the study of Humanities, but relates to any system or way in thought or action in which human interests, values and dignity predominate in philosophy or behavior.

Aha! Now you know why an Empathy Queen is interested!

Beyond all the brilliance in hand-written journals and diaries that capture our history and imagination, from Anne Frank to slavery, is the ability to capture great thought in the written word. Beautiful and eloquent thoughts have been shared in one’s own handwriting.

What a loss to realize that our children cannot read these works in their original form!

My heartfelt note and birthday wishes could not be read by my teenage recipient and that is when I realized how we have cheated this generation by giving up on Cursive writing. It is no longer taught in schools or part of educational curriculum. Spelling and grammar are not understood, nor appreciated, as they can be electronically corrected.

How can we transmit all of our history in handwritten love letters and documents of citizenship? Letters home have been a tradition of summer camp and kept as treasures, now relegated to relics of the last century. Papers and letters, censored or delivered in war torn areas by Red Cross delegations, speak of our greatest fears, loves, desires, horrors and history. Elie Wiesel wrote “Night” as his diary to remind us of what should never happen again. Ship manifests and hand-written applications filled Ellis Island to bring our descendants to America and record their personal effects, family members and birthdays. The Declaration of Independence and the signatures of our Founding Fathers cannot be read by our children.

Our humanity is in our hands and the way we brushstroke the letters of our signatures. Graphology provides us with clues to a writer’s character and personality when we can study the actual handwriting of an individual.

The beauty of linguistics and communication, a heartfelt note, a treasured thank you, Grandma’s well-kept recipes are part of our individual and family histories. The lost art of reading and writing cursive limits the notions of beauty and loyalty we can share and appreciate with our children.

Our signatures are bold, notable, remarkable and a lasting imprint; but only if we can read them.

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_writing_challenge/a-lost-art/
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Thank you for stopping by! It means more than you know.
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