Don't Let Words Become Obsolete

I don’t know, maybe it’s an age issue.  Maybe people aren’t talking to me because they think I’ve gone deaf.  Maybe they think I don’t understand the real world today. Maybe they feel the need to stick to only the basic means of communication because of some cognitive deficiency I’ve developed.  Maybe they are only attempting to amuse me.  Maybe…

                Communication skills have taken on a whole different meaning lately.  Complete sentences are becoming obsolete.  Words are being replaced by pictures.  Complete thoughts are watered down into one-syllable utterances.  Don’t get me wrong, if I’m not paying attention and my next few steps could take me plunging down the side of a cliff, an authoritative STOP will work just fine.  By the same token, turning a love sonnet into a one-liner just doesn’t do the trick.

                Jerry was a man of many words and lots of emotions.  He could turn a simple statement into an epistle.  A greeting card was simply a pretty picture with some nice words and plenty of blank space left over for his feelings.  When we were teenagers he was out of town for two weeks and every day I received multi-page letters written on both sides with his terrible handwriting filling me in on the day’s happenings and letting me know how much he missed me.  I didn’t need the reassurance, we were always meant to be, but the pictures he painted with his words made separation more bearable for two young lovers.

                In today’s world of cell phones and internet connections, our communications would have been in an entirely different ballgame.  Would I have gotten messages with hearts and little round faces showing different expressions?  How about hashtags and abbreviated words?  Never abbreviated words!!!  I’m sure I would have gotten emojis and hearts and whatever else looked appropriate but a picture of a heart and the words I Love You are not the same.  I’m sorry for your loss, I’m happy for you or I’m angry, are words that should come from our hearts, not generated by some computer program.

                Just maybe, if we could go back to saying what we mean or writing down our true emotions, we might be taken more seriously.  Maybe if we took the time and energy to actually talk about how we feel or listen to someone else’s concerns, there would be less anger or frustration and more understanding.  Just saying.  Don’t know if it would do any good in this world of pent up rage and secrets that we don’t know how to share but maybe it wouldn’t hurt to give it a try.  Maybe… 


God wove a web of loveliness,

Of clouds and stars and birds,

But made not anything at all

So beautiful as words.

Anna Hempstead Branch

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