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Bewildering Stories

Bewildering Stories discusses...

Ghost Lights

Dans le poète :
L’oreille parle,
La bouche écoute ;
C’est l’intelligence, l’éveil qui enfante et rêve...
In the poet,
The ear speaks,
The mouth listens.
Wakened intelligence creates and dreams...
— from Paul Valéry’s “La Poésie,” 1930

Nowhere in his art poétique does Valéry speak of sight. Sound comes naturally when writing in a language where poems can take on the sonority and beauty of a violin. And yet, Ron Linson’s poem, “Ghost Lights,” enables the reader to “see” the absence of sight. Its effect is to make the world a ghostly place.

Ron is one of Bewildering Stories’ review readers. Or, perhaps we should say, review listeners; he reads and writes by means of text-vocalizing software. In that, he has an advantage...

I don’t know how the software distinguishes between the homophones — like “there,” “their” and “they’re” — that are frequent in English. Nonetheless, it makes Ron an adept proofreader. He’s caught typos in Departmental pages that I had to strain to see. And there’s more...

All contributors could benefit from Ron’s example. Proofreading by sight alone is prone to error. We know what we mean, but do we actually say what we mean? We know what is supposed to be on the page, but is it really there? Our editors know from long experience that all writers would often be surprised to hear what they have written. A voice — preferably not our own — can tell us.

Let that be an example to us all. Before sending your next story or poem anywhere, boot up your text-to-speech software. Look away from the screen. Let the ear do the reading.

Please see Ron Linson’s bio page. He makes a request in time of need.

date Copyright January 29, 2018 by Bewildering Stories

Responses welcome!

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