‘Growing words’ at Tupper Lightfoot Memorial Library

Published 3:00 am Thursday, June 7, 2018

An organizational meeting for a literary group titled “Growing Words” attracted writers of prose and poetry to the Tupper Lightfoot Memorial Library Monday night.

The group was led by Larry McLeod and Ed Hicks. However, Growing Words is not a recordkeeping/dues-paying organization. McLeod said it is simply a gathering of people who find favor with the written word.

“The purpose of poems, of stories is basically to answer two questions – ‘What is human life and how do we go about it?’” McLeod said.

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And it’s how writers go about answering or attempting to answer those questions that keep the pages turning.

Lynn Sutton, laughingly, said the works of William Shakespeare are timeless.

“All writers since have been attempting to find different ways to say what Shakespeare has already said,” Sutton said. “Take ‘Romeo and Juliet.’ ‘West Side Story’ is one of the many ways that same story is told.”

Some group members agreed, but others questioned whether Shakespeare would even be remembered 50 years from now in this tech-savvy world.

Hicks said all writers struggle with human purpose.

“Who better to know about human purpose than one’s own self,” he said. “Only humans can analyze themselves. And that’s what we do when we write. Whether writing is our vocation or avocation, that’s what we do.”

A struggle for any writer is to find a different way to say something that has already been said.

Hicks said a writer often comes to the realization that nothing astonishing is left to be said and wipes the slate clean. But just when you think you have life and the living of it figured out, “some young dude flips on a light and shows you something you haven’t seen.”

McLeod said writing has got to mean something.

“It can’t just be words,” he said. “It has got to mean something to the writer and, hopefully, it will mean something to those that read it. If not, why do it?”

All of those at the Growing Words meeting agreed that, in reading what others write, they discover more of themselves. That alone is enough to pick up a book and turn the pages.

Tentatively, Growing Words will meet at 6 p.m. on the first Monday of each month. All who love the magic and wonder of words are invited.