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Hello and thanks for stopping by. Pull up a stool, I’d love to hear what’s on your mind. We have lots to choose behind the bar, and if we don’t have exactly what you like, maybe we can mix something new as some poets do with words.

As a young boy, I chanced upon John Hershey’s “The Child Buyer”. In it a riddle arises, what is a eight letter word with one vowel? That piqued my interest in where words arise, and how new ones spring into being.

Various sources on the internet tell us that some of the ways words arise are:

  • Created from scratch
  • Combining different words
  • Borrowed from a different language
  • Made by adding a suffix or prefix
  • Truncated or clipped short
  • From changed meaning over time
  • Imitating Sounds
  • One of the words that seems so appropriate to our times is Dreamscape coined by Sylvia Plath in her poem “The Ghost’s Leavetaking”
    Here she combines dreams and landscape to great effect.

    Enter the chilly no-man’s land of about
    Five o’clock in the morning, the no-color void
    Where the waking head rubbishes out the draggled lot
    Of sulfurous dreamscapes and obscure lunar conundrums
    Which seemed, when dreamed, to mean so profoundly much,

    Dante in his “Paradise Lost” invents pandemonium to describe the capital city of Hell

    Here sighs and cries and wails coiled and recoiled
    on the starless air, spilling my soul to tears.
    A confusion of tongues and monstrous accents toiled

    in pain and anger. Voices hoarse and shrill
    and sounds of blows, all intermingled, raised
    tumult and pandemonium that still

    whirls on die air forever dirty with it
    as if a whirlwind sucked at sand. And I,
    holding my head in horror, cried: “Sweet Spirit,

    what souls are these who run through this black haze?”
    And he to me: “These are the nearly soulless
    whose lives concluded neither blame nor praise.

    And then we have Poe, capturing the echoes of the bells through tintinabulation.

    To the tintinabulation that so musically wells
    From the bells, bells, bells, bells,
    Bells, bells, bells —
    From the jingling and the tinkling of the bells.

    Shakespeare coined numerous words – and surely adding a prefix to dressed to create “undressed” is worthy of a sonnet ?

    I will leave you with Lewis Carol, who combined chuckle and snort into “chortle” and the hopes that sometimes you’ll dare to create new words too, or at least chortle over the possibilities.

    Oh… and that word from the Child Buyer… I’ve heard it said sometimes schnapps gives one strength… but that’s another story.