A beautiful long sentence about long sentences – Long Sentence #2

Pico Iyer wrote a playful and eloquent article for the Los Angeles Times about his decision to write long sentences as a form of protest against our world’s obsession with speed. He explained that as a young journalist he had succumbed to the need for speed and crunched his writing into short soundbites, but as he matured in his writing and probably in life too, he discovered the glory of, and more importantly (to me), a powerful rationale for writing longer sentences. I’ve always wanted to find a solid defense for the long sentence, so that I could write on without inpunity, but had never come up with anything clever, and so it was a real pleasure for me to find this article.

Follows is the most beautiful, and one of the longest sentences in his article that gives a colourful, heartfelt explanation of his decision to write long sentences. Prepare to be amazed.

Enter (I hope) the long sentence: the collection of clauses that is so many-chambered and lavish and abundant in tones and suggestions, that has so much room for near-contradiction and ambiguity and those places in memory or imagination that can’t be simplified, or put into easy words, that it allows the reader to keep many things in her head and heart at the same time, and to descend, as by a spiral staircase, deeper into herself and those things that won’t be squeezed into an either/or.

To learn more about Pico Iyer, see his website.

Long Sentence #1: Hero with a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell

Trojan Palladium, with Nike and a Warrior, from the Louvre

Reading this amazing book by Joseph Campbell, the classic, The Hero with a Thousand Faces and the first sentence just about blew me away. Not only is it extremely beautiful, it’s also incredibly long!  It’s 538 characters: Read more of this post

Long Sentence #1: Hero with a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell

Trojan Palladium, with Nike and a Warrior, from the Louvre

Reading this amazing book by Joseph Campbell, the classic, The Hero with a Thousand Faces and the first sentence just about blew me away. Not only is it extremely beautiful, it’s also incredibly long!  It’s 538 characters: Read more of this post