You will want to read a longish poem just published by my favorite Canadian linguist, James Harbeck. Before then, note what he has to say about words:

Words are delicious and intoxicating. They do much more than just denote; they have appearance, sound, a feel in the mouth, and words they sound like and travel with. All of these participate in the aesthetic experience of the word and can affect communication. So why not taste them like a fine wine?

So what is it about his poem that so speaks to me?

You’ll have to decide that for yourself, but perhaps a few lines will whet your appetite and then you’ll read the whole thing:

No. Stay there. You can hear me
well enough as I cook.
There is one thing you should know
about my kitchen, and that is
stay out.

Say, if you’re getting bored
with the view of my three thousand books
while I whip up dinner for you,
here’s a special treat:
let’s go see the view
from the bedroom window. No, really.
It’s OK. I’ll go with you.


Categories: Books, Life, Linguistics