Tuesday, March 24, 2009

The Power of Words

We are in an era of faster, more, and I do try to keep up. I shoot digital video; I take zillions of digital photos and post them on Flickr and Facebook and then Tweet about it. I live in a big, noisy, wild city and I love it. But...despite all the visual and audio stimulation constantly streaming in and out of my brain, I will always put great stock in the good, old fashioned WORD.

I was therefore very moved by this passage from "Spirit of '76*," part of a slate of poems written by John Updike as he approached the end of his life:

Be with me, words, a little longer; you
have given me my quitclaim in the sun,
sealed shut my adolescent wounds, made light
of grownup troubles, turned to my advantage
what in most lives would be pure deficit,
and formed, of those I loved, more solid ghosts.

R.I.P., Mr. Updike.

(*Spirit of '76 is part of Endpoint, published in Mar 16, 2009 issue of The New Yorker Magazine.)

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