“A word is not a crystal, transparent and unchanged; it is the skin of a living thought and may vary greatly in colour and content according to the circumstances and time in which it is used.” Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.
This quote captured my attention. It brings forward an image of words as a living being. Words are the covering skin of thought. They are full of meaning, colour and promise. They contain ideas, thoughts, and concepts that are shaped by time and context. They are not hard and unyielding, like a diamond, or breakable, like glass. They are fluid and adaptive, not static or unchanging. For me, words are text, both spoken and written.
This image I discovered, visually matches the quote. The graphic, another form of text, is of a small hand overlapping a larger hand, surrounded by colour and light. The living skin of light that surrounds the larger hand extends outward, being shared with others. It visualizes the colour and fluidity of text, like light. The smaller hand, encompassed by the larger one, for me, visualizes the act of teaching, the sharing of the word and text with those younger.
In all its many shapes, forms and styles, text brings meaning and ideas to life for all those who view it and understand its message. The characters used as a topic for this post symbolize the word ‘text’. The symbols bring meaning to those who understand the language. For others, it brings frustration, until meaning is created.
Written or spoken, words are text. When written, the text is contained for all time. Unlike the spoken word, written text does not fade away with time.