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I’ll say it again and again and again…

mom looking in the mirror, aunt E. holding her drink, grandma in the reflection

mom looking in the mirror, aunt E. holding her drink, grandma in the reflection

Mom painted and took pictures. Though she got paid for filing and typing. Aunt E. wrote poems, made sculpture, painted. She was married to a man with a wooden leg. When she was young she was a dancer and a piano player. At 8 I showed her a poem I wrote about the sun. She said it was a sexist poem because I called the sun a he. I never knew how she paid the bills. Grandmother danced and played piano before she had children. She had a secret marriage at 18. It lasted two years. She balanced people’s books for a living. Grandmother and E’s mother left their father for an Argentinean and they played in a jazz band.

There are the other stories, other adjectives, that could make them look very different, but of course I prefer these. When I rewrite my stories, I find words I use again and again, not realizing that these certain words keeping falling on the page even though I think I’m writing something new.

It’s never new.

What words do you come back to again and again?

4 thoughts on “I’ll say it again and again and again…

  1. Yes, I do come back to the same themes, I think. And in my journal I often find myself lamenting about the writing career I don’t have….that’s why I made myself start writing a detail from my day in it everyday. No more complaining for me! Having a more “mindful” diary has made a big difference, actually. It reminds me how happy I am right now despite what I don’t have.

    You come from quite a creative family!

  2. Oh aye, I do find myself re-using the same words. It drives me crazy. After I’ve drafted a blog post, say, I’ll revisit it an hour later before hitting the Publish button. Finding the same “important” word twice in a post, within a half-dozen words or so, can postpone publication for 15 minutes or more while I scroll through synonyms in my head and/or rewrite the sentence(s) to put a little more space between the twins.

    In the one I just did, I agonized over having the word “reasoned” in one sentence and “reasonable” just a few words later. Note that even now, hours later, I still remember the pain.

    There has to be a word for this obsessive-compulsive cast-out-the-duplicates syndrome. (And I suppose that if there WERE such a word, I’d probably overuse it.)

    Some words I’ll see in somebody else’s writing — a blog post or a book or magazine — and even though I’m familiar with them, I’ve forgotten how much I love them. If I’m not careful, I’ll drop them in a half-dozen comments (written and verbal) in the space of just a couple days. Recently, this happened to me with “gobsmacked.”

    You seem to have opened a Pandora’s box of lunacy here.

  3. I love the way each sentence is a story, and so concrete. I tend to use abstractions too much, any abstraction, and then have to go over and over to make it visual and concrete rather than an idea and I’m never happy and then think that is not how I’m meant to write. Words that I repeat? I’m so unconscious of them, I can’t remember now. But I see them with revisions.

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