Telling it like it do be.

In the New Yorker, a great article.*

It’s about six – as word limit. Our life stories as a sextet.

Why shouldn’t biographies be brief, abrupt? Our life spans so short, overall.

Diesel makes me think of Nepal. A shawl, long skirt and sandals. Stepping around beggars, breaking my heart. Geography, it seems, determines class, station. Why should I be so lucky? Millions of others are going without.

Brad taught me compassion, understanding, love. People think he’s unable to be patient. But he’d wait for me forever. Red reminds me to make demands. Arnie helps me forgive, move on. We are a pack, a family. We are happiest as a foursome. Wagging tails and laughter, being outside.

I hope to see Marit soon. And Lizzie – I’m proud of her. And Mavis, so capable and kind.
I’ll spend the weekend with Megan. She and I find humor everywhere. I miss her, our hiking conversations.

I’m thrilled to go to Boulder. Always full of promise and possibility. Running along shady streets, up Flagstaff. Bouldering at that spot I like; above the Monkey Traverse, less crowded. At least, it was back then. I remember one evening with Rolo. He was quiet for a minute. A mountain lion chased a rabbit. I didn’t know to be scared.

So much changed when fear entered. Not just mountain lions, but everything. I’m different now, more careful, hesitant.

Just yesterday, I thought of “Go.” The shortest sentence in our language. It’s another coincidence, perhaps, this article. To read it today, fate maybe. As I’m struggling for words, headlines. As I’m trying to create meaning. To be relevant and clever and pithy. As I write and overwrite, explaining.

A concept shouldn’t require an asterisk.

Hemingway, famous for his brevity, wrote: “For Sale: Baby shoes. Never worn.”
Powerful, with more weight than words. He, a master of concision, prevails.

*I was nearly halfway before realization; each sentence has just six words. Of the article, of the report. Brilliant, this author, such smooth writing. I wondered how she did it. Did she write a “regular” sentence? Then return to whittle and rearrange? To create a revised six-word summary (as I have with this sentence)?

Or did she write each exactly? Six words only, more or less. The occasional forgiveness of a colon; perhaps a semi-colon or a dash.


Libby said...

I think it was Mark Twain who wrote:

Please forgive this long letter, I didn't have time to write a short one.

It's difficult to say precisely what we mean, isn't it?

fastgrrrl said...

Do. Be. Love. Share. Thank you.