E898B3A2-FD96-4357-B45A-8A856A06F6F6I have a torrent love affair with words. It’s 100% true. They hold acreage in my heart, and it’s always been this way, long as I can recall. I can’t imagine another way. So, give me all the words and I’ll get lost in them like a labyrinth. Hedge me in; I’ll hunt through like a word search. Every which way, I’ll try to make a way with them. Let them lead me out with sentences, and paragraphs, and stories. Let them take me where they’re going, because that’s where I want to go.

Confession? Sometimes I see fonts. (At least I didn’t say dead people) I hear the words, and in my mind I type them out accordingly. Typography. Maybe it’s the designer in me, but I often see the words I hear. I sort through phrases and assign them placement for print. I arrange, rearrange, add emphasis and hierarchy. It’s a canvas of black on white, but they bleed like watercolor once they are parsed perfectly. Such beauty in running words.

I imagine lyrics like freehand, with flowing strokes in italics. Envision the poet stitching together the fragments, piercing the fabric of the soul, then pulling the threaded theme taunt. They gather all the ideas, emotions, and heart-renderings into some magnificent patchwork, then tie it off with melody. It’s like cursive quilted into music. And it’s a language that makes perfect sense to me, though the underside is mangled knots. How I adore words and notes.

Now, consider staccato shouts, in bold caps and harsh block letters. They aren’t pretty at all. They don’t roll off the tongue, but rather, are forced out of the heart and mouth at gunpoint. They topple out of and onto. Hit like an anvil on the head, just like in the cartoons. And then we see stars, all slack-jawed and bewildered. Those are heavy things. Things the heart hurls. They don’t make much sense on paper, but erupt out of that very place of trying to make sense. I know too well.

As for my own words, they mostly look like scribbles and doodles on gum wrappers, or the back of receipts. Traced over several times because of shoddy ink pens, then crumpled up and thrown into my purse for later. Or they’re written on the back of my hand, where all immediate things go until I wash them away. That’s how my words look to me. And that’s just fine for now. As long as I have them with me. As long as they are mine.


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