Tag Archives: language

Trite Phrases

We visited Canterbury Cathedral. Wonderful place. Thomas Becket’s tomb has been moved and destroyed over the centuries, and there is a simple candle burning in the spot where his shrine last stood in the Trinity chapel. The floor is absolutely beautiful.

I was watching a cricket Test the other day. A particular bowler was struggling with his bowling and was being hit all over the pitch. One of the commentators really had a go at him and announced that he needed “to keep it simple” – a little phrase I’ve heard over and over again in cricket commentaries. This time there was no response from his colleague, only an awkward silence; then the words, “What do you mean by, simple?” Again an awkward silence, and then a rather hesitant response, “You know, I’m not sure.” I loved his honesty, but I couldn’t help thinking of all those fashionable little phrases we use so glibly without really knowing what they mean.


I’ve been deeply struck by what I can only call a sheer coarseness permeating our relationships, especially here in the UK at this time. I see it happening specifically in our language in the political sphere of life. Our words have become rough, raw and thoughtless, No doubt the nature of our language unveils the reach and depth of our souls. I’ve had to sit myself down and take a long inward look. Sadly, I’ve discovered a real lack of reverence and empathy.   


The dappled light in the woods never fails to move me.

A Reflection:

Isn’t it strange how at times when you try to put thoughts into words, you have the immediate feeling of the thoughts being cramped and inadequately expressed. 

Words are powerful, yet, can be so constraining. There’s always the inevitable complaint,  “It just didn’t come out the way I wanted it to.” Perhaps that’s why we experience more being said in the art of silence than in that of speech. 

There is a language beyond words, we’re simply not proficient enough to hear and understand it.