Why should it be difficult for man to write about sweetness? Shouldn’t it be as natural as a bird breaking out into song on a warm and bright morning?
Strange, isn’t it? If you say, “Impersonate an angry man, raging at the world,” I know right away what to do. Anybody would. It doesn’t require a lot of thought. But if you say, “Impersonate a happy man, simply and quietly happy,” I guess that would stretch the imagination of the best of our actors, and some of them would shrug and walk away. It’s not that we don’t know what it is to be happy, but we can’t easily find the signs for it, maybe because it’s too profound for signs, or because, when we’re truly happy, we’re not thinking about it at all, we’re not conscious of ourselves as putting on a part, and how our faces show at those times, we can’t tell, and even those who share in our happiness and who are looking our way will find it hard to describe. When we’re angry, and we feel sorry about it afterwards, we’ll say, “I wasn’t…
Listen to this episode with a 7-day free trial
Subscribe to Word & Song by Anthony Esolen to listen to this episode and get 7 days of free access to the full post archives.