Saturday, July 25, 2009

Anger and Cooked Carrots

Words act as symbols for a variety of emotional and intellectual connections. Everyone feels visceral responses from “color” words resulting from life experiences. Anger, love, war, and friendship stimulate mind pictures, sensory responses and complexities of mood.

During my early years when my father read to me at bedtime, he encouraged me to close my eyes and create mind images of the stories using my ears, sense of smell, taste and feelings. One evening I must have fallen asleep during his reading of Arabian Nights because I awakened suddenly out of a dream where I heard my father's voice say, "The villagers were angry."

I saw mashed carrots steaming from a bowl on a window ledge. I could smell them. Their cinnamon and clove flavor exploded into my mouth. From then on when I heard the word, angry, it elicited an association with carrots. It became a beneficial trigger to make me laugh and not get caught up in the emotion the word represented. What a benefit this has become in most of my life situations.

Creative Write: Think of the "color words" that stimulate your emotions. Do you have experiences with them from the vantage point of your other senses? Share a humorous story.

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