Barry Lopez in Winter Count has a piece that is a portrait. “The Lover of Words” is described as understanding
the power of words to draw forth feeling and to mesmerize. He understood how words healed.
A slow reading that doesn’t rush to the next sentence allows the image of a self-healing word to emerge. Words as beings that can be wounded. Such an image suits an attitude to language that respects not only power in words but also how power comes to words.
It is perhaps not surprising that there is a vegetative aspect to such use of words. The plant and the word are similar.
At an all-but-unfanthomable depth in his spirit, however, there lay an irreducible idea, medieval and adamantine, about the replicating quality of metaphor and the physical revelation of abstract ideas. As he tended to his bushes and plants, to the trimming of lawns and the hillsides of ivy, he drew himself along in a world of cultivated ideas, trimmed and watered as expeditiously, from which arose an atmosphere as salubrious.
How different the task of purging a language which some poets set themselves from the humble local project of healing words.
And so for day 72