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Dancing with Words

February 25, 2022

One of the most satisfying aspects of writing and reading poetry is the rhythm that is built into words. It’s as if, as we developed these languages we use–whichever language it is that we use–we created it with an automatic sense of design…”design by syllable,” if you will.

I’ve thought about it for years, and now believe that more than our brain and tongue are involved in creating language, simply because of the evidence. There is rhythm in every word we use. From the single syllable words, like “crab,” a firm stomp of a step, to many syllable words like “crustacean,” which feels like out-flung arms ending with a gentle double flick of the wrists. Our words form a sequence of rhythmic steps that satisfy our expressions, much like a dance.

So now, out comes “The Crab Ballet” by Renee’ LaTulippe, a perfect example of this little truth I’ve suspected for so long. There is poetry in our segments, rhyme in our ligaments, meter in our bones (or exoskeletons as the case may be).

I took Renee’s Lyrical Language Lab long ago, and it has served to deepen my love of poetry. Now she comes out with this delightful poem picture book, illustrated masterfully in watercolor by Ce’cile Metzger. It is a work of art, and heart, as I’m sure you will recognize at first sight, and first read.

I don’t have my copy yet. I believe it comes out on March 8, 2022. I can’t wait to order it and get it in my hands. But you can get a sneak peek at Renee’s blog, No Water River.

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