Pining for Lost Phrases, Antiquated Language

I have lists and lists of phrases I keep in a small notebook in the car just in case there is a chance to use them at the drive-thru window or in conversation with someone I happen to meet while out and about, but there never is.  There’s hardly ever a reason to tell someone you are choked on the brambles of despair even if you are, or that someone excites your warmest sympathy. I use the same excessively commonplace phrases day in and day out.  My father always said he was fair to midlin’ when people asked how he was, something I say as well, though it’s now lost in translation. Often during the day, I make singular discoveries which I can only explain by telling those around me “No, wait, I get it.” I can’t tell people that they arrested my attention or that my friend is, indeed, as honest a woman as ever stood in shoe leather, or that another is so full of cowardly braggadocio that I can’t bear his company a minute longer or that I am disinclined to anything. I can’t use ought or shan’t very easily either. No one ever speaks of anything being dappled anymore unless you’re at the barn, but half my day is surrounded by dappled things. No one screws up their courage and breathes life into what they say anymore.  And as I mentioned before, neither do I.  I have not the courage.  Instead I use my Elmo voice to order Happy Meals for the kids at the drive-thru once a week and we all bust out laughing.  My God, deliver me from the snare of my own iniquity!


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