Before I write about my chosen word today, let me say a sincere thank you for all those who reached out to me last week. I was deeply moved by the love and concern I felt after writing about my struggles with Logan and his homework. Since last Wednesday I have spoken with his teacher and we have come up with a few things that we are hoping will help Logan succeed. I will keep you posted on anything that we find to be successful in helping him learn and grow. Knowing we are not alone is a powerful force that unifies and encourages.
Some words are emotionally charged and bring to mind specific feelings and emotions. Learning these words can give voice to the emotions that swirl inside our despondent or elated minds. These are words like last week's disheartened, which is very different than depressed. Knowing the specific word gives the writer or speaker a certain power and, as I've said before, English is full of specific words. I may have been disheartened, but I would not resort to defenestration. Thankfully though, English also has words that are just beautiful and should be used for the sake of their beauty. Words like undulate or murmuration are just gorgeous and though you could live your whole life without needing to use them, using them makes your speech more vivid and alluring.
Today's Word: Ethereal
Four syllables. Pronounced [ih-theer-ee-uh l]. Adjective. Defined in the OAD as "extremely delicate and light" I've heard this word used to describe the fleeting beauty of youth or to describe the undefinable nature of something.
"Music is the ethereal connection between this world and the other." ~ Stella Benson
Read that quote aloud. Isn't that beautiful? Now tell the people who are giving you weird stares about the awesome blog you're reading and tell them that they're missing out. Although ethereal isn't one of the words listed in the thesaurus as a synonym for fog, it is the word that I think of when I see fog. The way fog rests over a particular area and can be viewed from far away reminds me of an other-worldly specter. Maybe it's because fog machines are used to evoke that feeling in a theater, but for whatever reason, every time I see something like the image below, the word ethereal comes to mind. And apt or not, I'm more in favor of ethereal than the other listed synonyms for fog like ground cloud, pea-soup, or visibility zero-zero. Let's try that out.
"On my way to work today, I saw an ethereal mist over the park."
"On my way to work today, I saw a ground cloud in the park."
Okay, let's be honest, if your co-workers are anything other than poets they would probably look at you as though you had lost your mind if you mentioned an "ethereal mist" but you could think it and appreciate its beauty. Sigh, this is how I get myself in trouble. I SAY it out-loud. I tell people about the ethereal mist and get the weird looks. I'm totally fine with people thinking I'm crazy. This is why I fit so well in preschool and middle school. They're crazy too. Now, after blurting out something odd, I say I'm a writer and they just smile and nod while I bask in the culturally granted permission to be eccentric that we give to writers and artists.
Whatever it is that you are up to today, I hope it is filled with wonder and fun. Find a way to get away from the must-dos and enjoy something for the sake of its own beauty. Say the words that make your heart sing and always stay curious!
"A jack of all trades is a master of none, but oftentimes better than a master of one."