Words are surely real


Abby Wright

A picture of lakeside scenery that was taken by Abby Wright.

Reveling in the words of The Picture of Dorian Gray—the intricate descriptions and long-winded commentaries on society and beauty included—I stumbled upon a line that practically highlighted itself.

“Was there anything so real as words?” (Wilde, page 39).

I quickly brought my pink highlighter to the page of my book, bought in Mankato from a used bookstore that houses thousands of books and a cat. And I agree. There is nothing more real, more powerful; my unnecessary description of a Minnesotan bookstore is characterized by these words and their concrete reality.

Life is communicated with them—our code of humanity. What we perceive aligns alongside Oscar Wilde’s peculiar yet precise descriptions and Nietzsche’s nihilist analyses of the human condition.

Words are reality.

Maybe I want others to realize the power of their words; they dig deep, and they cut hard.

They transcend time, and they convey true humanity, and they build complexities that we can all relate to, and they are, at their core, humans themselves.

For this, and for everyone left unsaid, I am proud to use them; I am proud to have over 200 published stories on the site; I am proud to cultivate a space as an editor for others to feel this same attachment esoteric to themselves and their words.

I’ve had four years to do so—to express myself in this powerful medium, to convey my reality, to bring others into my world—and I’ve had four years of a space that has allowed me growth. So a part of me breaks when I don’t see it in others. It hurts, and I can’t discern why.

Maybe I want others to realize the power of their words; they dig deep, and they cut hard.

Maybe I want others to love books the way I do. Sometimes it feels like the world needs more bibliophiles like Penninga—who could singlehandedly sell me the Constitution if she said there was a complex metaphor—to show appreciation for our stories and our voices.

Maybe I want others to have the space I do—the growth I’ve had. Words have created a home away from home, a field of flowers flourish from their power, a challenge of what I’ve always known versus what truly exists in our world.

I cannot thank The Central Trend enough for everything the simplistic yet complex newspaper has given me: the people, the opportunities, the connections, the discovery, the way to take up space. Supplementals come easy when I can write about my home, my people, and they show me.

These words show me, whether on TCT or filling in the Common App, and they are the most real thing I have.