A word is limiting and expansive simultaneously. We are constricted by words yet they set us free. Through poetry, through drama, through dramatic texts or poetic conversation; words are what make us as a species unique. Written language. Spoken thought. But what is the word unique? Think of what it means to be unique. If everyone is unique how can unique be unique? Uniquely so. You see, these are words. You’re listening to words right now. Realize that. Conceptualize that. This is self-aware terminology now. Listen to them. Hear the words. It’s like being reminded you’re breathing, once you have the thought in your head, you control it, it no longer is done manually and it takes twice the power. A word sticks in your brain as long as you need it to. You’re thinking and listening in words right now. Words are in a word thought to be considered fact, unless that word is a lie, or the thinker is drunk. A word, in whatever language, means exactly what that word means. Think of that. A fish is a fish is a fish and so on. The world around us gives perspective to the world inside ourselves; our minds, our imaginations, who we are, who we want to be…but words are dangerous because they claim fact out of subjectivity, bliss out of ignorance, filling variables with past experiences like how a person was raised, what a person was told, taught, or titillated by. Each of these unique experiences a person beholds teaches or rather, instills, a certain italicized meaning, a definition with an annotation, meaning words are inbred with the ability to change their meaning from person to person. Faggot is a word. Nigger is a word. Heaven, hell, tits, dick. Everything is words. Words start wars, words cause hatred, align allegiances to segregate the antonyms. Before words actions did it, after words, words did the talking and now words hurt worse. My final word: choose your own more wisely. Then again I might be over thinking this.
They say the first line is one of the most important parts of a book*. Get it right and the readers’ eyes are all yours, get it wrong and they’ll start looking around, distracted by the feet of strangers or two birds fighting over a sandwich.
Over on our Instagram account (here, follow it here) we’ve been asking people for the first lines that have grabbed them. So, along with a few of our own personal favourites, and a pleasingly alliterative title, here are fourteen fantastic first lines.
Sympathy is the greatest weapon man suffers. Not bullets or cans of gasoline, no, pity is the quantum bomb. A genocide of the soul. To understand who I am…You must understand who I could never be. A saint. A God. A person who has the time to care. I’m the itch in the back of your furthest thought. The fear at the bottom of your stomach. The unmistakable, unavoidable, unmaintainable truth. I am you down to the marrow. I think your thoughts. I say your words. I am you, flesh and blood. I am you, here and now. My right is right, isn’t right. My right might be wrong, makes it right. To understand me, you must understand who I could never be. I could never be anyone other than me.
Looking back I’ve realized we find really random things to hate people for. Like their skin color or their sexual orientation, which are like two of the furthest things apart for such cutting hatred. I mean one takes place outside your body, it’s your skin, the other is inside your heart. Based off that our society should start hating the people who wear hats all the time and anyone with AB negative blood types because they’re evil. Personally it’s my belief we should hate people for a reason. Hate people because they’re better than you. Hate because you mean it, not because you’re scared.
You have the mind of a scientist and the heart of a soldier. You have an unparalleled memory. You can recite every color of every shoe you’ve ever walked in. Your weakness is that you believe walking in someone else’s shoes is a weakness. You’re not afraid of death, you’re afraid of living an unfulfilled life. You dream of being remembered because you feel you have something to prove. The best advice you ever got was on the sidewalk from a stranger who held a sign that told you to do good. So do good. Be the best. Be a leader and a follower. Be a scientist and a soldier. Be a poet and friend. Because all anyone is trying to do is to do good, so why not try?
Facts on a microscopic level are little lies connected by trust. Believe whatever you want, as long as you look at it as a whole and not as what things make it up. Perspective is everything. Two sides to every story. For someone to claim they know what they know, it’s up to them to support that claim. Mermaids don’t exist. But who’s to say in 1000 years we reach the bottoms of the oceans and see floors in perfect clarity…And sitting there on a rock is a pretty little mermaid. Now won’t we feel ridiculous. The again…I might be over thinking this.
Anything’s possible if you have enough time. Anxiety can play tricks on the mind. A chemical imbalance warping the reality of your eyes. The science of the self. But think back to when you saw something that defied logic… Think about something that redrew the blueprints of your what you thought you knew and changed who you thought you were…A first kiss, the death of a family member…That feeling wasn’t science…That feeling was love. Love isn’t logical.
Imbedded into us: dates, times, social security…injected into our existence from our very FIRST breath. Numbers are uncontrollable, irresponsible, and entirely necessary. We have no authority to change our number once it happens, although some do try; milfs and cougars being the prime suspects. Most everything is numerically labeled for accurate random individualism. Having been an individual for one-million forty-four thousand nine hundred and twenty-four minutes, I’ve discovered just how dependent we are on what numbers seem to do: they make us feel important. T.S. Elliot said, “Half the harm that is done in this world is due to people who want to feel important.” He was right on time with that statement. Reality stars suffer from this terminal affliction. People needing constant validation usually on Sunday nights at eight. TIME. Schedules. Without them we would live in a constant primal state of being late for something we never knew existed. That’s love. We reward ourselves in numbers. The winner is first; number one. The loser is third on back. You garner some acclaim for second place but only for a second and that’s a place only third on back wish they had. A world without numbers couldn’t survive or at least there’d be no record of it, as the records show. Numbers are autocratic in nature meaning the one person to put value on them is you. Don’t limit yourself to what your number dictates. So can I have your number?