The Longest Word

There are fish here, can you see them? Swimming around in the pond. Look, there’s one now. I smile and I run around, jumping over the water at the corners of the pool. It’s a grey day, but you get used to that here, and it doesn’t really matter. It’s time with my mum, just the two of us, and that’s all I really care about. I don’t even know why we’re here or what we’re doing, none of that matters.

I barely notice the Swiss cottage, it’s not as interesting as the pond. After all it’s old, and worn, and I don’t care who Charles Dickens is, he sounds boring. Nevertheless, my mother feels the need to tell me about him, that it was his, and the he wrote his last books there, every time. I guess it matters to her. Books are her life after all. Words. She cares about words. She teaches me the longest word there is, and so one day I find myself correcting my English teacher, and telling her that it’s floccinaucinihilipilification, and not antidisestablishmentarianism, which is a double negative anyway.

Damn her and her love of words. Now I find myself hunched over a keyboard, trying to form sentences, trying to say something, anything, with meaning. On a Friday night!

I continue this love affair with words, with language, passed on from her. I relish the feel of them in my mouth. I revel in the way they flow from my fingertips. I savour the rhythm of the clicking keyboard.

I lose myself, for a moment, and I’m back there again.

There are fish here, can you see them?

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Ian Sharman
Ian is a freelance writer and artist. He founded Orang Utan Comics Studio with Peter Rogers in 2006, writes for their Eagle Award Nominated anthology Eleventh Hour and regularly inks for Panini’s Marvel Heroes comic.
Ian Sharman

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