This I Believe

Mickey - Mesa, Arizona
Entered on April 28, 2007
Age Group: 30 - 50
  • Podcasts

    Sign up for our free, weekly podcast of featured essays. You can download recent episodes individually, or subscribe to automatically receive each podcast. Learn more.

  • FAQ

    Frequently asked questions about the This I Believe project, educational opportunities and more...

  • Top Essays USB Drive

    This USB drive contains 100 of the top This I Believe audio broadcasts of the last ten years, plus some favorites from Edward R. Murrow's radio series of the 1950s. It's perfect for personal or classroom use! Click here to learn more.

The Divine Breath

I believe in the power of words. Words can be lanterns: shining beacons of possibility against the darkness of the present. Gandhi knew this secret, as did Martin Luther King. Words can be weapons, cudgels that crush, or explosive projectiles fired off in anger. Words can be seeds, planting the most dangerous and wonderful of all crops: ideas and thoughts. Words can transform the mundane into the extraordinary. With all that words are, I believe that words are nothing more than sounds without actions to support them. Words and actions should always be in concert with each other. Stating that something is wrong and then committing the exact same transgression is hypocrisy, and I have found that people who proclaim themselves as bastions of morality are the ones that cannot ever be trusted. Words can mean different things to different people. “Wrong,” “Right,” “Good,” “Evil,” are words that have different and very mutually exclusive meanings to whoever is setting the standards.

To me, words are both medicine and therapy. Words give me perspective and objectivity, and they help me keep a grip on my sanity in a world that is all too insane at times. For a while, I had a blog that I wrote my poetry on. I didn’t really think anyone would ever really read it, but I made it public. I was having strangers read my poems and tell me that it spoke to them, which shook me and brought a tear to my eye. When I write about any emotional state that I am in, it helps me to understand and know a little about myself, and when I share what I have written and people relate to my work, I know that I am not alone in the world. That knowledge is both liberating and sublime, and without words it would have been impossible. Words weave their own spell and are the most powerful form of magic, for they have the power to change lives. They can transform people and societies for both good and for ill, and can even change the world itself. And this I believe.