Is there anything better than a surprise gift from a friend?
Yes, when that gift is a book!
I have been showered with book-gifts this past year, a source of endless joy. This week the magnificent Lost Words from Robert MacFarlane and Jackie Morris arrived, thanks to my dear friend Sam.
The book was created in response to a batch of words being swapped out of the Oxford Junior Dictionary – mostly natural creatures being replaced by techno-lingo.
What kind of fool would prefer blog to bluebell, voicemail to kingfisher, attachment to newt ?
Surely there are better choices that could be made, including the choice to have a slightly longer dictionary. In any event, this beautifully illustrated book does each word justice, from the adder to the fern to the willow.
I have lost some prayers I used to know by heart, some recipes I used to make without googling, some journeys I used to take without a map, some songs I used to play from memory.
These could all be revived, and this book is proof. One look at MacFarlane’s acorn and you know it is safe, so vibrant and loving is the presentation.
Dear friends, whatever is fading from our dictionaries, could we infuse it with new life? Could we share it with a child, so that it can thrive for even longer?
Let’s pick something dear and nearly forgotten today, and honor it.