Saturday, December 8th, 2007 • 6 Comments on My Words
Last year for Jay’s grandmother’s 88th birthday I made her an ornament of words. The family had planned a big party for her and everyone was supposed to give her a hand-crafted ornament that represented us. In this case, the word ornament represented not only me, but also Julia. (I do not call her Granny or even Granny Julia, she is just Julia to me—and I think she likes that just fine).
Julia is one of the best writers I have ever read, though she would argue otherwise. She does not consider herself a writer at all. We write each other “real” letters every week or so and her words flow off the page like poetry. I wanted to make an ornament for her that represented our mutual passion for words, that represented her love of the written word that allows her to write with such eloquence. She inspires me with her gift and makes me want to be a better writer. I chose words that reminded me of her, words that reflected who she is and what she means—not just to me, but to everyone who knows her. Words like garden and nature and travel and books and wise and history. And writer, because she is.
Julia turned 89 a couple of weeks ago and she wrote in her last letter that her Christmas tree was up, with all of the hand-crafted ornaments from last year. I remembered that after I finished her word ornament I had intended to make one for myself. I really loved how it turned out, the way it could be turned this way and that and a few new words would flutter to the surface. A snow globe of words, creating phrases beneath the glass—fondest wishes and greatest desires, memories of the past and hopes for the future. I wanted one for myself.
It has taken me a year, but I finally made my own word ornament:
I used many of the same words for myself that I used for Julia, because in many ways we are similar despite our 49 year age difference. I also added some reminders for the coming year…
What words would be in your snow globe?