Jacob Mann

Hi, my name is Jacob Mann and I cover the Art Beat for the Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman. Stories start in many different ways.

This one can be seen as a sort of brief intermission between my latest series on creating a public dialogue on art education. I recently talked to a friend of mine who’s not only my fellow Valley Trash brethren but also an avid lover of words like yours truly.

So, I’d like to dedicate this column to some of my favorite quotes about the power of words, including some fresh local musings on the matter.

“Without knowing the force of words, it is impossible to know more.”

- Confucius

Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless.”

- Mother Teresa

“Good words are worth much, and cost little.”

- George Herbert

“No matter what anybody tells you, words and ideas can change the world.”

- John Keating from “Dead Poets Society”

“Words have a magical power. They can bring either the greatest happiness or deepest despair; they can transfer knowledge from teacher to student; words enable the orator to sway his audience and dictate its decisions. Words are capable of arousing the strongest emotions and prompting all men’s actions.”

- Sigmund Freud

“Words are really very valuable things.”

“If you think a great thought, how do you write it down?

Words!

If you spot a brush fire, how do you warn the town?

Words!

...

You can read ‘em, you can write ‘em,

You can sing them, and recite ‘em,

Underline them, misdefine them

They’re amazing!

Words, in a word, are fantastic!

You can hint ‘em, you can say ‘em

You can print ‘em, you can pray ‘em

Emphasize them and despise them

They’re fantastic!

String them into sentences and thoughts profound

We’ll abound, in a symphony of spoken sound,

Truth is found, beauty crowned.”

- King Azaz the Unabridged, in the movie adaption of Norton Juster’s “The Phantom Tollbooth”

“I think any artist just wants to be seen… Look how many great ideas and inspirations that went dead in the water that we’ll never know about because we didn’t give them the attention… I think we’re sharing emotions more than art.”

- Jamie Bailey, local musician

“I struggled so much with reading and writing until one of my teachers introduced me to poetry and it made the connection between the words I was reading and the things I wanted to hear… So, then I started writing my own stuff because I noticed these people were writing their feelings down. I was like, ‘I feel like that. I think I can write something like that…’ Eventually, it started to morph into its own thing... That’s what music is right? It’s that storytelling. It’s healing. It’s growth.”

- Justin Pendergrass, local musician

Art Beat was brought to you today by the letter W and the number 2, as in “sometimes words have two meanings.”

Contact Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman reporter Jacob Mann at jacob.mann@frontiersman.com

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