About Ilene On Words


Lean: “To rely for assistance or support”-Free Online Dictionary

In 1994, I saw the film, Shadowlands starring Sir Anthony Hopkins and Debra Winger. Hopkins portrayed the writer, C.S. Lewis and he said something very true about books which I can’t remember verbatim. Paraphrasing, it went something liked this, “You are never alone when you have books.”   Similarly, Jhumpa Lahari also lauded the magic of books in The Namesake through the main character, Gogol: “”My grandfather always says that’s what books are for…to travel without moving an inch.”  Words provide “assistance or support” in a myriad of ways that I will explore and invite you to travel with me “without moving an inch,” except to hopefully run to your public library or download.

Leaning on words has been a mainstay of my life since my earliest memories; whether it was a lullaby sung to me by my mom; a story read aloud by a teacher; books and movies like To Kill a Mockingbird; the inspirational words of

Frederick Douglass, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Ann Frank; lyrics that inspired an end to war such as those of Bob Dylan and Phil Ochs; the Bill of Rights startlingly symbolized by the lives of Chaney, Schwerner and Goodman; the mission of Freedom Summer; WJRZ during the early 60s; WBAI during the 60s & 70s particularly radio hosts Bob Fass, Steve Post and Larry Josephson ; Deejays Murray the K, Pete Fornatele, Vin Scelsa, Scott Muni, The Nightbird Alison Steele,;  recipes that nourished our souls; poetry that spoke to me such as the works of

Langston Hughes, Lawrence Ferlinghetti. Pablo Neruda, June Jordan;

Lenny Bruce’s comedic take on society; Howard Zinn’s stating real American history; Jonathan Kozol pleading for the rights to a great education for ALL children for many years;  Pete Seeger singing “One blue sky above us…;”

Words deliver “assistance or support” by being there, showing up, never leaving. They ask for nothing and in return they can change our lives…that is miraculous!

Whose words, lyrics, satire, orations, poetry, books, plays, actions have inspired you or transformed you? Dig within and make a list for yourself that will visualize the words you have relied on for “assistance and support.”

45 thoughts on “About Ilene On Words

  1. My personal fave quote, courtesy of the ver-witty Voltaire:

    “It is with books as it is with people — a few good ones make all the difference.”

    Amen to that!

  2. Thanks for dropping my blog, and especially for liking something there … your “like” brought me here to have a look around and for that I thank you too. Only had the time to read one post so far but I’ll be back. Thanks again.

  3. I’m very glad to find you. By coincidence, a thought occurred to me today that I could not put into words–a thought about words. Words themselves are too much like hidden treasures to me; it seems I’m searching for them all my days and am never satisfied. –That wasn’t exactly the thought. I look forward to reading more of your blog all the same..

  4. Thank you for visiting my favourite pastime, too, I love books. In fact my whole family loves books, our second home is the local library, we love being there. I loved “to kill a mocking bird” my favourite phrase in the book: “we’re making a step its just a baby-step but its a step”, it sort of made me cry and I always remember those words when I get impatient or want things to go quickly…if I look back and see that I have made a step, then I relax. Have a pleasant week!

  5. Hi I, Thanks for sharing your thoughts & song!. You Pete Seeger sing along was so mellow & peaceful. keep it going!

  6. What an interesting blog – such a range of topics. We share a love of ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ – one of my all time favourites (and just in case anyone thinks I can’t spell – I’m from Scotland and that’s how we spell favourites!) 🙂

  7. Hi and thanks for requesting access to my private blog. It is just a blank shell. You can delete this comment if you like, I was not sure how else to let you know. Thanks for continuing to support my politicaltunes blog on wordpress, which is not private. Keep blogging!

  8. Hi Ilene. Love your About. Your C.S. Lewis quote reminded me of another by Mr. Lewis:

    I am a product of long corridors, empty sunlit rooms, upstairs indoor silences, attics explored in solitude, distant noises of gurgling cisterns and pipes, and the noise of wind under the tiles. Also, of endless books.
    — C.S. Lewis

    Good luck on your blogging journey. You are off to a wonderful start.


  9. Aw! What a treat to read your piece n Tom Paxton. I love his songs and he is a true gentleman.
    Like you I played and played his tunes and sang his wonderful lyrics. Each bringing back for me some wonderful times and some terrific memories.
    Thank you so much for linking my blog to your own. I love my first brief visit and shall look forward to the next
    Take care

  10. Ilene.. I hate to appear negative amongst all this joy of words but reality is that words can also kill. I have lived long enough to see our country degenerate into the quagmire of perpetual war and economic decay because of words that kill. Words like “surgical strikes’, words like ” the war on terror’, words like ” too big to fail”, words like ” teach to the test”, all calculated to deceive and in many cases effect life. Sorry. We must take the bad with the good. Camus said in Caligula ” Man dies and is unhappy” and that is the trajectory of all lives.

  11. I love your blog. Of course as a fellow “Eileen/Ilene” with a love of words, I must follow your blog 🙂 … Love the title Ileneonwords, wish I’d thought of it first (just kidding).

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