During the past year, I’ve been focusing on words. Individual words. Sentences. Every letter in every word. Words matter when I’m writing a book and hoping to convey a specific mood or thought. Words matter in day-to-day life too. Ours is such a decadent society, doing and saying whatever benefits us in the moment. We demand “transparency” yet use words to disguise and confuse.
It’s called politics.
Remember the saying, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never harm me?”
Hold your horses (another good saying). In time, most bones heal. The sting of words can slice through the toughest armor and stay with us, sometimes forever.
Harmful words affect generations of people.
The oldest reference to the “sticks and stones” proverb dates to March, 1862, when the adage was published in The Christian Recorder, an American periodical with a mostly black audience.
Later, the rhyme was used to fight off playground bullies. In the early 1970s, the class bully was as much a part of school as the class clown, part of the school experience.
Power struggle. Strong vs. weak. This is one of the underlying themes of my novel, The Accidental Salvation of Gracie Lee.
Gracie Lee, the protagonist of my novel, wasn’t immune to the sting of words dealt by the bully on the playground or the bully at the supper table. And while she may have felt fragile deep inside where dreams swirled and secrets hid, determination and spirit helped her deal with things the best way she could.
Grace Grits and Gardening
Farm. Food. Garden. Life.
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