Blog

Stories from a life in progress.

Surrounded by words

My bolt-hole office space, as I described before, is an unused room in my aunt and uncle's house.  It started out as a bedroom for one of my cousins, who is now living in the greater Philadelphia area preparing for a graduate school program in Music Therapy.

My cousin is a lovely young lady who I don't get to see nearly often enough, now that she lives hours away from here.  When she lived regularly in this space, one of the primary ways she decorated her walls was to cover them in quotations written out on colored cardstock.  She lives elsewhere now, but her quotations still live here, and I find myself reading and pondering several of them every day.

After a few days in this room, I teased my cousin that she should never let anyone she wanted to deceive into this room, because reading the collection of her quotations reveals too much about her character.  These walls tell you, for example, that my cousin esteems friendship and good relationships, that she is very interested in the idea of being true to your own genuine nature, that she believes dreaming and working to achieve dreams is important, and that she has a deliciously irreverent sense of humor -- not in any gross or offensive way, but rather in the kind of way that loves clever word-play and turning ideas on their heads.  (These are only a few of the reasons I love my cousin dearly.)

Because I know this collection grew over time, and because I know familiar things often stop having as much impact in our consciousness, I wonder if my cousin truly realizes how revealing her collection of words is about her.  Maybe she does, maybe not.  I wonder even more if I would be brave enough to make such a collection of words and display it where someone else could see.

When I first thought of this question, "would I be willing to make a collection of words like this and let someone else see it?," I pondered it for at least a whole minute before realizing that I WRITE A BLOG ON THIS-HERE PUBLIC INTERNET.  I don't have a collection of quotations, I have a collection of essays.  Ones I've written myself, out of my very own head.  If someone wants to know who I am and find out what's important to me, they could do a lot worse than to read them.  It's possible that someone who reads my whole collection of words here might gain a clearer sense of my character and what's important to me than I have sometimes for myself.

Maybe I should ask someone to read everything here and analyze the results.  It might give me some of the clarity I keep looking for.