Thursday, November 4, 2010




: howl, wail

The word ULULATE is considered to be an example of onomatopoeia—perhaps the first I have come across in the writing of this blog.

Onomatopoeia is a concept I always wanted to be self-reflexive. Let me unpack this idea. Onomatopoeia is the property of words that suggest the sound they describe. The word onomatopoeia comes from the Greek "name" + "I make," hence also referring to the act of formulating such words. What I am imagining is that the act of making these words—the sound of a thought congealing or an idea coming into focus—sounds like the word onomatopoeia. To my dismay, onomatopoeia is not an example of the concept to which it refers.

I hear the sound of a sad trombone—a sound that has yet to be onomatopoeized.


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