Updrafts                                ~ Home Page


The Collected Poetry and Prose of Charles Leonard Johnson

Welcome to Updrafts!

   

     Updrafts is first, a celebration of language - joy derived from words - that I want to share with others.

 

Consider how essential breaths of air, and the expulsion of stale air causes living tissue to vibrate and so disturbed flows out, is formed by the mouth, twisted by the tongue and ultimately, effortlessly is sculpted into words, quite literally expressed. Then, when heard, this mere turbulence of updraft and downdraft instinctively intertwined, innervates the cells of the brain and recreates the voice of what in man, we call the mind. It is astounding!


I have been fascinated with language my entire life.

 

I don't possess the imaginative, creative or intellectual prowess of those who have found success in writing. Whether I have special talent or ability to compose from mere fragments of sound something singularly meaningful or moving or enchanting or grand is candidly, beyond my innermost aspiration: it has never been a serious pursuit. I recognize great works of others and profess my awe openly and my lack of reach, inwardly.

 

But, my study and reading and writing of poems emerged from that thrill I felt and still feel at the sound that is the very essence of each word, written or spoken. It is the power of language as a pattern of sound - the resonance of words however articulated, that has and will always give me special joy.

 

Language is taken for granted. We speak, communicate, read and write throughout our lives.  

 

We may speak of the meanings of words. We might study their origin, the evolution of language. Or we might focus only on the functional aspects of language: the organizational utility that letters and words and grammar and spelling and punctuation and composition and ultimately, pronunciation and articulation contribute constructionally to the primary aim which is communication. 

 

We may cherish only the results - the great stories and novels, or spiritual and philosophic admonitions and inquiries, or favorite song lyrics or poetry that wondrously compresses language into some uniquely evocative mental, emotional and/or spiritual experience.

 

How impoverished would we be without the articulation of ideas and concepts and personal experience that language makes possible?

 

For some reason, in addition to respecting the power of language, I have always been compelled on impulse to hear the actual words and marvel at them - to play with them and study their tonal quality merely as fragments of sound heard actually or heard only echoing about in the silence of my mind.

 

It is the sounds of the words themselves, more than any image or sentiment a particular poem of mine might be constructed around, that I hope to offer in the form of this otherwise unremarkable collection of personal art. For each that might visit, I hope the few minutes spent are enjoyable and worthy and that your own words give you joy, too.


 

Blessings and my thanks. - clj

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This site was created

 March 29th, 2007.

 

 If you do enjoy your visit, please come back often and check for additional material.

 

I have quite a collection I would like to share and never enough time to devote to such endeavors.

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