Would-be writers have struggled for centuries trying to put words together that made sense. Writing goes back to scribbling on cave walls. Much later, Greeks and others known as philosophers wrote about what they'd learned about living a good and virtuous life. Surprisingly, they knew more back then than modern-day writers know now.
Originally, words were put on parchment or paper that served humankind well. But with recent digitalization, Twitter is the way to go. It's short but not always sweet. Tweeting is a way for anybody to express their deepest feelings when they can't sleep at night. Our president has written over 11,000 of them. If we don't know how he feels by now, we'll never know.
What do I know? I know that I like trying to put words together, but it's as tough as what cavemen faced. First, pick a subject, preferably one you know something about. Research takes too much time. If you can't think of a topic, make [one] up. Or steal [a topic] from good writers, who know what they're writing about.
Have you ever tried putting words together to express your deepest feelings or state your opinion, but became flustered and gave it up? Remember sitting behind Marcie in your sophomore English class? What had suddenly come over you like a bright meteor from the sky? You wanted to pull on her ponytail, anything to get her attention. But the boring English teacher had instructed the class to diagram a sentence.
How would diagraming a sentence help express your explosive feelings that had suddenly come over you? Not sure what it was, but it must have been about true love that you'd read about in the Bible. It said to “love your neighbors as you love yourself,” and Marcie was as close to you then as anyone else. “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” is an awful feeling when someone doesn't do unto you as you prayed they would.
Writing love letters has never been that easy. In 1850, poet Alfred Tennyson wrote, “Tis better to have loved and lost, than to never loved at all.” No, it isn't, he didn't know what he was talking about. In 1963, erotic poet Gershon Legman wrote, “Make love, not war,” and readers thought he had gone off his rocker.
The art of writing about love seems to have gone by the wayside. Writing about “hate” is currently in vogue and politicians are masters at it. Expressing hateful feelings shouldn't be the best way to get votes.
Aspiring writers, no matter the age, should keep at it, and hope they can someday write something that would be remembered, such as Yogi Berra, Will Rogers, Mark Twain and many other wordsmiths did. Yogi Berra caught baseballs for the New York Yankees in the 1960s. He didn't write that much but made profound statements that are often quoted today. He said: “Always go to other people's funerals, otherwise they won't go to yours." — "It ain't over until it's over." — "If you come to a fork in the road, take it." — and "The future isn't what it used to be.”
Will Rogers, a popular entertainer during the 1920s and 1930s, wrote a few gems during his lifetime: “A fanatic is always the fellow on the other side." — "The income tax had made more liars out of the American people than golf has." — "But with Congress, every time they make a joke, it's a law. And every time they make a law, it's joke.”
Mark Twain was the master of defining the human condition in simplistic terms. He was a unique and incomparable talent, who grew up on a riverboat on the Mississippi River.
A few of his observations: “The secret of getting ahead is getting started." — "Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it." — "Kindness is the language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see." — "Suppose you were an idiot, and suppose you were a member of Congress, but I repeat myself." — "Life would be infinitely happier if we could only be born at the age of eighty and gradually approach eighteen." — "Age is an issue of the mind over matter. If you don't mind, it doesn't matter.”
If my age doesn't matter when about all I can do is sit and try to put words together, it gives me something to do.
Been wondering, if God exists, do I? Then tell me why I'm here.
— Contact Terry Cummins at TLCTLC@AOL.com.