Words like Rouge

April 17, 2010

When you doubt between words, use the plainest, the commonest, the most idiomatic. Avoid big words as you would rouge, and love simple ones as you would native roses in your cheek. –August W. Hare

Avoid big words like rouge? Now that’s a writer’s tip I can appreciate. As of late, my vocabulary has disseminated to caveman grunts and one word syllables. “Homework”, “NO”, “Clean, Room, Now” is about the extent of my dialogue. Even Dr. Seuss would approve. “Go Dog, Go” is one of my favorites during mud season.

Maybe it’s the spring in the air, but my energy wanes at the end of the school year. Surely, the kids know the routine by now. If they don’t I give up, or grunt.

I like August Hare’s description of native roses in one’s cheek. What a beautiful line. Simple, and yet not. When I look outside during the spring, nature beckons the same. A common daffodil effortlessly knows exactly when to escape the darkened earth. How extraordinary. The precision of simplicity brings a knowing. What a wonderful possibility for our own lives.

Simplifying can create power, clarity, and awareness whether it’s on the page or in our lives.


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