Museum of Language & Place


Conversation on the beach, by Susan Kuznitsky

There is a common expression in English for a common situation everyone encounters again and again throughout our lives. I am thinking of the expression, I’m at a loss for words. You think, you reach, you grasp, you tip your face skyward, you rap your fingertips on the table in front of you, you try to find some expression, some phrase, some precise words, to express what you want to say with clarity. . . and you find yourself completely lost. You find yourself stuck in this place where you discover the best way to say it is to say, “I’m at a loss for words.”

Gwen Williams, in Thoughts on Practicing the Art of Conversation. “There’s an intensity of the immediate, the intimate, in spoken word that the written word can never equal.”