Contemplating the Author’s Pen and Civility
From My Journal
In recent posts I have been sharing musings from my journal and how the content of the musings relates to writing. In this article I examine the author’s pen and civility relative to language. I offer my musing and then will comment on the use of cow pie language that too often these days flows from an author’s pen to the page and then is thrust in our face as readers. The musing:
JUST SOMETHING ON MY MIND
Why is it that we take something extremely personal, sacred, and superlative beyond words, throw it in the mud, trample on it, and enjoy a laugh while thinking the whole thing so cool? I speak of the wonder of sexual intimacy between a husband and wife that we “moderns” have reduced to a gutter word that we seem to enjoy spewing forth with mindless incivility.
Then there is the opposite end of the spectrum. When I was a little kid I would walk through our neighbor’s pasture and thought it “cool” to sink my bare feet into the warm piles left by his cows. Gross! People have said, “John, how could you do that?” I was a stupid little kid. But today adults spew the stuff of cow pies from their mouths, “in your face,” so to speak, as a part of conversation.
Can anyone tell me what makes the F-word and the S-word so cool? I don’t get it! Why do we need to debauch sexual intimacy and exalt excrement?
Am I being “holier than thou”? I trust not. And in that regard, I make no claim to perfection—I am a work in progress—but I am conscious of civility—the simple courtesy of respectable language.