Sunday, December 12, 2010


When I awoke this morning, I saw my pen, phone, and watch on the bedside table, and, for some reason, they seemed to be in the exact perfect alignment. I remember thinking that's exactly where they should be. I had set them on the table in a random manner the night before, but when I saw them this morning, there was rightness, even gracefulness, in the way they were placed. They were sitting in what appeared to be the absolutely perfect positions. For some reason, it called to mind the many instances in my classes when aimlessly spoken words were mysteriously transformed into the perfect words for the occasion. I'm sure my students and I don't meticulously plan each word we speak, and yet our spoken words sometimes seem like skillfully designed utterances, just right for the specific situation. It's as if our words were slowly set side-by-side in a wordsmith's studio -- as if our words were a work of art instead of just casual sentences. Things happen like this in our world -- seemingly purposeless pieces of life presenting themselves as stunning creations. Scattered snowflakes falling across lawns can seem flawlessly organized, items on a table can take on a look of precision, and hit-or-miss words in English class can shine like perfectly-placed spotlights.

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