Sunday, September 24, 2017

Petrichor, pernickety and brouhaha

Our ancestors were hunters & gatherers, and so am I. I collect stones. They take zero maintenance, and my garden is better because of them. (Says a lot about my green thumb.) 

As a writer, I also collect words. During the last day or so, three words that I’d love to use, stayed with me and I’m going to share them.

First there’s petrichor. Outside it’s raining cats and dogs. I keep my window open and inhale. Ah there’s nothing quite like petrichor…especially in the fall when it’s mixed with the smell of decaying leaves and the sound of migrating birds.

I was delighted to discover that the word petrichor—the smell of rain—comes from the Greek word petra…meaning stone and chor…which refers to the fluid in the veins of gods.
            
Then there’s the word pernickety. All those consonants! They prickle like the word’s meaning. The word jumped out at me while reading a translations of Goebbel’s 1940 diaries.  Another word he used that I’d like to find a perfect spot for, is the word brouhaha. Again, an example of onomatopoeia.
            
Words are like stones. They can be used to build or to destroy and they have stories within them. A writer’s tools.

            
The Nazis carefully manipulated the German people with their propaganda. We call it fake news. A bunch of words. A lot of power. 

Okay, now let me try to use these three delicious words in one thought. Petrichor drifts in through the open window, alongside the brouhaha of squabbling blue jays, while I attempt to text on my pernickety smartphone.  

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