E-book to help you research, write, revise, and get ready to publish in all genres

Monday, July 5, 2021

The power of meaning-filled words


This morning as I looked through a book on painting with oil pastels, I was reminded of an old school lesson on vision: i.e., The rods of the eye distinguish light from dark, whereas the cones assess hues of color.


Reading about rods and cones brought to mind the fourth verse of the twenty-third Psalm:


Even though I walk through the darkest valley,
I will fear no evil,
for You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff—they comfort me.”


Wow! This newly considered meaning of “rods” resulted in the following senryu, which I wrote down quickly before I forgot!


The rods of the eye
distinguish light from darkness.
God’s rods comfort me.

©Mary Harwell Sayler


In this instance, the added connotations produced a poem, but this process can work backwards too. For example, as you read through poems you have already written, consider each word and any additional meanings they might have. Then, as you revise, use the most interesting connotations to add new depth and fresh insight to your poetry.







No comments:

Post a Comment