Monday, December 04, 2006

Words can be Poison

Checking my due dates on the library web site today I clicked, while I was there, on Pulitzer prizes for fiction and discovered, to my surprise, that "Gilead" by Marilynne Robinson won last year. I was surprised because I had checked it out a few months ago. I didn't realise at the time that it was a Pulitzer prize winner. It just sounded interesting. But it didn't hold my interest. I never finished it . In fact I found it a little weird. Which probably says more about my pedestrian tastes [ the rarified air of Pulitzer prize winners being too rich for me] than anything negative about the book. One passage, actually several, did, however, make enough of an impression on me that I wrote it down in my trusty little notebook. And it was this:

"A little too much anger, too often or at the wrong time, can destroy more than you would ever imagine. Above all, mind what you say.
'Behold how much wood is kindled by how small a fire, and the tongue is the fire'---that's the truth".

5 comments:

mjd said...

Indeed, that is the truth. I love quotes.

meggie said...

My daughter always says the old adage
"Sticks & stones may break my bones
-but words can never hurt me" is one of the biggest lies there is!

Bones can heal, but the scars from words never do.

My float said...

Oh how very true. I often chide myself for my temper, which flares rarely but when it does, watch out. It causes more damage than if I was to be more forthright in the first place.

Isabelle said...

Yup, I agree. I've led a sheltered life, but I remember very clearly the few nasty things that have been said to me... and I don't really forgive them, I fear...

I'm not aware of having been particularly nasty myself, but then it's all a matter of point of view, I suppose.

It's interesting: I think the world of readers is divided into those who plough on regardless and finish books and those who - sensibly - give up on the ones that don't grip them. I'm the former, except for "Midnight's Children", which I never got very far with. I kept having to re-read the first chapter because I couldn't remember what happened in it.

Anonymous said...

I am surprised...its beautiful..now I have something meaningful to read and cherish while I am snowbound/icebound in NM. Congrats...."Molly" from Marilynn