As I was enjoying an unusual guilty pleasure today – a leisurely late breakfast, my mind took its usual circuitous route and went off on a tangent. The word tangent flicked wildly between sips of tea, birdsong and my feeling that the real reason I paint, is because I sing off key.
So please try to follow as I go in a tangential direction: In our writers’ group, (Word Crafters), we have turned the geometrical and spacial meaning of tangent (as well as its linguistic use) into a lightning sword watchword that moves conversation from meandering into meaning. And it actually does this more with humor than cutting edge. “TANGENT” has turned into a useful tool to harness the sometimes wayward energy of typical group sidetracking into more focussed discussion.
With this in mind, my to-do list was to paint early in the day, but when I sidetracked to poetry, I called “TANGENT” on myself, and decided to look up its actual meaning and write a poem about it. I have now sidetracked enough time that I am beginning to feel my belly rumbling for lunch, however I did manage to feed and walk the dog twice. This for my efforts:
1. (geometry) a straight line that touches a curve at a single point without crossing it there.
2. (daily life) a topic nearly unrelated to the main topic but having a single point in common with it.
3. (at Word Crafters’ meetings) a strong warning that you have moved off topic to the point of no return.
4. haiku and found poem:
late breakfast birdsong
tangents a point in common
do I sing off key?
ag ~ 2015