Category Archives: Essays

Perlocutionary -Friday’s Word of the Day

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Today’s word of the day on dictionary.com is a whopper, and therefore quite the challenge when constrained by the limited syllable budget of a Haiku. I shall nevertheless give it its due. Perlocutionary is an adjective that describes a type of speech that persuades, enlightens, inspires, frightens, or amuses the listener, causing them to act. Philosopher, J.L. Austin explains it perfectly in this excerpt from “How to Do Things with Words”, written in 1962: “We can similarly distinguish the locutionary act ‘he said that’ …from the illocutionary act ‘he argued that’…and the perlocutionary act ‘he convinced me that’…”

The word perlocution has been around since the 16th century originally meaning the act of speaking. It basis was formed from the Latin locutio, “speech, speaking, discourse”, a derivative of the verb loqui, “to speak”. Its present iteration as a noun and adjective did not enter the English language until the 20th century with the addition of the prefix ‘per’ meaning “through, complete or perfect” (as in brought to completion).

I learned that there are stages in the application of locutionary, illocutionary and perlocutionary acts. While it would seem that the latter is the more refined direct act of the three I was surprised to discover that, in fact, infants between the age of 0-8 months are masters in the art of perlocutionary discourse through the use of sounds and gestures. Every whimper, coo and cry has an affect on the hearer, causing them to act. Eventually the child begins to repeat actual words (locutionary acts) and to apply them with meaning as in the words “no” or “why” (illocutionary acts).

It’s all very interesting of course. And way over my head. I have rarely bothered myself to determine whether a speech or statement is locutionary, illocutionary or perlocutionary, but I do admit to being moved and swayed by words. A simple cry for help raises my adrenaline and propels me into help mode. And a temper tantrum can shut me down in no time flat.

We are so easily convinced by words. I doubt that I’ll take time to analyze the words that move me, next time it happens. Even though I now have a word for it. Perlocutionary acts…my biggest challenge at the moment is figuring out how to fit a six syllable word into a Haiku. But at least now you have a new word to file in your vocabulary drawer under “words that are nice to know”.😊

words of gloom and doom,
perlocutionary acts,
drive fools to folly

~kat

http://www.dictionary.com/wordoftheday/2017/10/20/perlocutionary


Shi Sai Sunday’s Week in ReVerse – 15 October 2017

If there is one thing you can expect from me, dear reader, it is raw honesty. The good, the bad and the ugly. At least from my perspective. Because that is all any of us has. We see the world through our own personal lenses. Some of us take the time and make the effort to inform our opinions with fact. And some of us let others do the work for us, gravitating to the truth that feels good to us.

Welcome to modern day America where news is fake, opinions are truth, there is us and them, and fear trumps love and reason. I saw it coming. This hotbed of extremes we find ourselves in. I tried to warn those closest to me that their support and vote for evil would not end well. I hate being right.

There is no satisfaction in having my greatest fears come true. There is only heartache compounded by the battle scars that I’ve sustained in the aftermath. My adult children, their spouses and extended families all voted for Trump.

Was I wrong to be angry? Was I wrong to feel betrayed? Was I wrong for being sad to realize the truth about those closest to me? I can tell you it makes me feel like a total failure as a parent. Though, with middle-aged children, when does the responsibility for their actions cease to be my fault? Mothers are too easily blamed.

And so I find myself in a new reality. A casualty of these divided states of America. Because I have refused to remain silent in the face of the injustice and the assaults on freedom, democracy and liberty for all, my own universe has imploded. My punishment for being other is to be outcast, separated from my beloved grandchildren, and disowned by everyone but my partner…and my dogs who still love me unconditionally. No more birthdays, mother’s days, grandparent’s days, thanksgivings or christmases to look forward to. Living death in the face of everything I held dear because I could not bury my emotions from those I had always considered safe.

Honesty, reality, truth, compassion, empathy, love. They still mean something to me. I have paid a dear price for these things. It is all I have left of the me as I struggle to find my way in this new reality. My heart grieves everyday. Being dead while living is not for the faint of heart. But I still believe in truth and honesty…and love. Even when it hurts.

Shi Sai Sunday’s Week in ReVerse – 15 October 2017

left to wither alone
warm flush reducing me to ash / over the edge, swirling shards of bone
What’s so important
troubling my heart…
no one wants to know
phantoms in the mist
Oh my god! What happened?!”
That day the world felt too big.
I never believed in signs.
the moribund harbingers
it was never love
on the wind take flight
there’s a battle
power to change
it is now
to be forgotten

~kat

A shi sai or ReVerse poem is a summary poem with a single line lifted from each entry of a collection of work over a particular timeframe and re-penned in chronological order as a new poem. Unlike a collaborative poem, the shi sai features the words of one writer, providing a glimpse into their thoughts over time. I use it as a review of the previous week.


Twittering Tale #53 – 10 October 2017

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About the challenge: Each Tuesday I will provide a photo prompt. Your mission, if you choose to accept the challenge, is to tell a story based on that prompt in 140 characters or less. Be sure to let me know in the comments with a link to your tale.

A final note: if you need help tracking the number of characters in your story, there is a nifty online tool that will count for you at charactercountonline.com.

I will do a roundup each Tuesday, along with providing a new prompt. Have Fun!

Twittering Tale #52 – The Roundup

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Photo by GLady on Pixabay.com

Starting us off…my tale:

When Joe was a kid he loved the circus; especially clowns. They were the nicest guys. But Joe was not nice. It was the perfect disguise.
(137 Characters)

From Reena at ReInventions:
“Who is that clown in red?”
“That is a demeaning phrase. The correct word for that is … Actor in the Comic Category. He is an award winner.”

(139 characters)

From Kalpana at Gemini in the Sky:
As he scrubbed his face clean, he felt unsure. The face in the mirror and the mask had merged into one and he never knew when

From Shweta at My Random Ramblings:
He wore a mask to make others laugh for a living,
but no one noticed the pain behind his smiles when he took off his mask.
(123 characters)

From Lady Lee at Lady Lee Manila:
Life is like a grammar class
Full of sentences and fragments
In every class, there’s a jackass
Therefore, we need our patience
Send in the clown
(140 characters)

From Leena at Soul Connection:
“Hey Kid Wana C My Tricks”
“JOKER”Kid Ran Away
Hey M Nt Bad Joker.Lk M Frndly,M Smiling.
Dis Kid Too Scared Of Me.

From Willow at WillowDot21:
Pushed away at home and at school
Always treated as the class fool.
He grew up happy in his own space.
He was a hit, and now wears a happy face.

From My Feelings My Freedom:
I despised clowns for obscuring their true identity. My belief was however defied, when the man in red, took the gunshot for me. Appalled!
(138 characters)

From Hayley at The Story Files:
Once again they cluttered the streets in their bright costumes, so Sally had no choice but to camp out in her attic and wait till the craze had passed.

From Vivian at Smell the Coffee:
-Oh my! When you said you were a clown
I didn’t realise that it was ur actual job!?
-Oops! When it said ‘blind date’,
I thot it mnt BLIND date!
140 characters

From Peter at Peter’s Ponderings:
His right pupil had already blown and dropped to the base of his iris. Now his nose was falling off. That cosmetic surgeon sure was a clown.

From Fandango at This, That and the Other:
I always thought that guy was a bit of a clown, but when he showed up in that stupid clown suit it just proved that he’s just a bad joke.
(137 characters)

From Francine at Woman Walks Dog:
Clown at the Fair
See that clown ? His real name is Ernest Doom he’s a crime writer.
How funny – I mean funny peculiar not funny ha ha
What tickles him ?
Nasty crimes for his books

From Deepika at Deepika’s Ramblings:
Too much chaos, stress and violence out in the world.
“Let me take on, making people smile.”
Come all, “Smile a while”, ease out the tensions.
140 characters.

From Jan at Strange Goings on in the Shed:
It’s taken a while to track you down and I’m not in a good mood. You’re fifty years overdue and he wants it back. Hand the soul over.
(135 words)

Clowns are quite an odd topic I found. Some of you were creeped out…some of you creeped ME out with your tales. There were a few funny tales too…and some bittersweet. Well done! Clowns are definitely controversial characters. But I love what you did with the challenge.

This week we’re exploring the story behind this treehouse. How many of you had a treehouse to play in when you were a kid? I lived near the woods, so I pretty much lived in the trees. Good times. There is something magical about having a special place to hang out when you’re young. I also had a secret hiding space in my room behind a bookcase that slid open like a door. I remember setting it up like my own little home inside a home. I spent many hours dreaming about life in that special place. What memories come to mind when you look at this week’s photo by Antranias on Pixabay.com? You have 140 characters to tell us all about it! Have fun. See you next week at the roundup!

Twittering Tale #53 – 10 October 2017

treehouse-255518_1280

Photo by Antranias on Pixabay.com

“There it is! Come on.”
“Nope. I’m fine down here.”
“Suit yourself. Have to see if it’s still there.”
“What’s so important?”
“This!”
“Is tha…”

~kat
(140 Characters…exactly)
Sorry…had to do it. The Rules are the Rules…140 Characters…but I do love a good cliffhanger!  😉


Shi Sai Sunday’s Week in ReVerse – 8 October 2017

It befuddles and confounds us; the senseless rage rising up like fire, raining down like acid. Friendly fire that no walls, travel bans or profiling can protect us from. Why are we confused by the realization that our worst enemy is not some other?

And yet we refuse to own it once again. Those with the power to address tragedy turn their eyes away. Their pale lips drip with platitudes and empty prayers, while their pockets moan to be filled with alms for their loyal cowardice.

It is no longer when, how or if this madness will ever end. We are trapped in this house of mirrors. But the terrible monster is not hiding behind the looking glass. No. The monster stands tall and center, glaring at us; a million eyes, burning holes through our souls.

Shi Sai Sunday’s Week in ReVerse – 8 October 2017

okay universe…you have my attention
in the wake of hate’s fire
it was the perfect disguise
misty shapeshifting fay
soul deep pools of ebon wonder
here’s the order in black and white
luna’s face glows flush
gently letting go
swirling into syllables
truth’s reflection burning bright
of course we never let on
crave its sweetness
by lingering sadness
rooted in stone
every sinister force
untouched by seasons

~kat

A shi sai or ReVerse poem is a summary poem with a single line lifted from each entry of a collection of work over a particular timeframe and re-penned in chronological order as a new poem. Unlike a collaborative poem, the shi sai features the words of one writer, providing a glimpse into their thoughts over time. I use it as a review of the previous week.


Twittering Tales #52 – 3 October 2017

 

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About the challenge: Each Tuesday I will provide a photo prompt. Your mission, if you choose to accept the challenge, is to tell a story based on that prompt in 140 characters or less. Be sure to let me know in the comments with a link to your tale.

A final note: if you need help tracking the number of characters in your story, there is a nifty online tool that will count for you at charactercountonline.com.

I will do a roundup each Tuesday, along with providing a new prompt. Have Fun!

Twittering Tale #51 – The Roundup

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Photo by Nordseher at Pixabay.com

Starting us off my tale…
The twister spared the trees but had tossed the apples on the ground.
“Looks like an apple butter year,” Mae quipped. It was her best batch.
(140 Characters)

From Reena at Reinventions:
This looks rotten on one side. Not the best for apple pie for her special people.
After all, their grandchildren visited only once in a year.
(140 characters)

From Michael at Morpethroad:
There’s one bad apple and I pulled it out.
Can’t have it spoiling the whole barrel.
You could have been that apple.
Lucky I pulled you out.

From Martin at Martin Corcoran:
Newton’s ex-wife never grew tired of cooking apple pies and dropping them on him from a great height, yelling Don’t blame me, blame gravity!
(140 Characters)

From Fandango at This, That, and the Other:
The old woman with the arthritic hand thrust the apple toward me and asked if I wanted a bite. When she started to cackle, I ran away.
(134 characters)

From Irena at Books and Hot Tea:
“It’s a magic apple,” gradfather said.
“Magic isn’t real,” I gumbled.
“Just try it,” he smiled.
And magically, my sadness disappeared.
(131 characters)

From Sight11 at Journey:
Who knew that the bright red exterior was getting rotten inside? Looks can be deceiving.
Well death was eminent. If not maggots, then teeth. 

From Kitty at Kitty’s Verses:
As the new turns to the experienced for guidance and support,the latter looks forward to the former’s novelty.Life comes a full circle.
134 characters.

From Peter at Peter’s Pondering:
Each year he offered the first of the crop to his darling wife.
This year she was not there to receive it.
Gone. 
The apple of his eye forever!
(140 characters)

From Lorraine two tales at In 25 Words, More or Less:
Different disguise. Smaller apple.
That girl was always one sandwich short of a picnic.
(86 characters)
Or
“Steve, take a break,” Grandfather Jobs said, offering a small Macintosh apple.
“Wait . . . I think I have an idea,” and the IPhone was born.
(140 characters)

From Leena at Soul Connection:
He Sold Ancstrs Land Agnst Evry1’s Wish
Days Later He Lost Job
Appls Lk Juicy
On Demnd V Xprt Dem
It Ws Frm Sme Land Whch He Sold Thnkng Useles.

From Jan at Strange Goings On in the Head:
This is fruit from the Tree of Life  and Death. It enables you to see the creation of the Universe or its death. What do you choose to see? 
(140 characters)

From Willow at Willowdot21:
“Look” he said. “It was just like this, round and ruby red” My eyes grew larger. 
“It was bigger of course  and full of poison.” Winked Grandpa.

From Vivian at Smell the Coffee:
Mirror mirror, am I the prettiest one of all?
You wld be if only you’d eat the apple you were given!
Apples, not chips!
WHAT?
Just go on a diet!
140 characters

Thank you to everyone to took a bite of the apple last week. Some of you made me laugh out loud. You were clever, sentimental, mysterious and inspiring! As always, BRILLIANT! Truly! 🙂

This is Week 52, which means we’ve been tweeting these tales for a year! Another anniversary of sorts. The challenge photo for this week is this photo of a clown by GLady on Pixabay.com. I don’t particularly like clowns. They can be scary. But they make some people happy. I often wonder about the people who dress up like clowns. What is their story? What is this guy’s story?

I hope you have a good week. If you decide to join the challenge, have fun! I’ll see you at the round up. ❤

Twittering Tales #52 – 3 October 2017

clown-365375_1280

Photo by GLady on Pixabay.com

When Joe was a kid he loved the circus; especially clowns. They were the nicest guys. But Joe was not nice. It was the perfect disguise.
(137 Characters)

~kat


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