The light of words

26 03 2006

“I wanted to teach you everything the earth is full of, Helen. Everything on it is ours for a wink, and it’s gone. And what we are on it–the light we bring to it in words . . . We can see 5000 years back in the light of words. Everything we feel, think, know, and share in words, so not a soul is in darkness or done with even in the grave. But I know . . . I know one word and I can put the world in your hand. And whatever it is to me, I won’t take less. But how?” ~ Annie Sullivan thinking out loud, shortly before Helen Keller’s breakthrough.

This weekend we watched the old black-and-white version of The Miracle Worker, with Patty Duke as Helen Keller and Anne Bancroft as Annie Sullivan. Truly remarkable.

This concept of “the light of words” is going to haunt me. I can feel it.

Great movie. See it. Or, if you have already, see it again.



6 responses

26 03 2006

I wonder what shape Ms. Keller’s thoughts took.

I’ve had the good fortune to visit her home in Tuscumbia on a couple of occasions, and seen the live performance of the play version of “the Miracle Worker” performed in the backyard of Ivy Green… I suppose I took that for granted until just now. Thank you for reminding me.

27 03 2006

Yes, I wonder the same thing. And how did she “talk” to herself without words?

27 03 2006

Is it appropriate, especially for this particular movie, to recommend that people “see it”? Would it be better to encourage, in recognition of Helen’s perspective, touch and taste this flick with abandon?! FAU

P.S. I find it telling how our present culture too often merely desires to see, rather than take in the words and concepts of a movie for serious reflection. I.e., a mindset that expects to be simply splashed with a visual experience – “let’s not get too deep, it’s only meant to be amusement.”)

3 04 2006

Miracle Worker too

There is a lovely version of “The Miracle Worker” starring Patty Duke as Annie Sullivan and Melissa Gilbert at Helen that was made for TV quite a few years ago. It’s an amazing story and also really cool that Patty Duke gets to play Annie after having played Helen. Hello, my seester! I love you:-) Lois

4 04 2006

Re: Miracle Worker too

I saw that one years ago, too. I didn’t remember that Melissa Gilbert played Helen, though. Isn’t she the “Little House on the Prairie” girl?

5 04 2006

Re: Miracle Worker too

Yes, she was the “Little House on the Prairie girl, Laura Ingalls, and now she’s the president of the Screen Actors Guild. (Following in Patty Duke’s footsteps. Maybe someday she’ll play Annie Sullivan. It seems only right. Love, Lois

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