The laying of words

Published 8:56 am Wednesday, February 23, 2011

It seems life can be very much like one long sentence that has a beginning and an ending and all kinds of crazy things in between, not like a subject or predicate, but more like an introduction and a closure that starts in a most innocent way with a phrase like “Once upon a time,” or “In the beginning,” or even “It was a dark and stormy night,” and ends with something like “and so it was,” or “because of this,” or “and it came to be,” or some other concluding thought, kind of like life, but all between are interwoven prepositional phrases and conjunctions that connect the big words together and the sentence never stops, but keeps going on and on like life keeps going on and on with no real periods, but only an occasional comma or a slight pause, if you will, while one catches their breath and dives back into the sentence again only to see the next big word as it approaches and finding it feels like it was written before you even got there or before you even entered these places that you never knew existed, but now you turn around and find you are actually inside these rooms with strange names pasted on the walls like “love” and “sex” and “marriage” and “children” and “pain” and “longing” and you wonder what other rooms exist out there, somewhere in the wilderness, waiting for you, as the sentence unfolds like a story being told from outside-in towards a destination far out amongst the hills where the sun races to his hiding place, though we have no clue where the place of arrival may be but only that it is going in a particular direction, being written by some invisible hand, the words placed like a single row of bricks being laid one at a time, so deliberately that is seems even if all the powers in the universe were built into one single wall even that wall could not stop it, not even for one second, for the sentence would blast through it like it was chocolate ice cream left out of the fridge on a July night as the husband and wife lie snoring in their king-size bed while the sticky liquid sneaks across the counter and drips on the off-white tile floor which, if you think about it, “across the counter” would be the prepositional phrase modifying “sneaks,” which may seem a rather small part of the story, but is actually just as necessary as “snoring” and “drips,” making all of life seem like one long sentence, don’t you think?

Rex Alphin is a farmer, businessman and contributing columnist for The Tidewater News. His email address is