Why Do Something If It Can Be Done: Quoting Gertrude Stein # 29

The deep question, What have we learned from writing in the past year? is still drawing circles and surprising answers among the She Writers. Here is one from Gertrude: what she learned about writing from her dog, Basket:
“Basket although now he is a large unwieldy poodle, still will get up on Gertrude Stein’s lap and stay there. She says that listening to the rhythm of his water drinking made her recognize the difference between sentences and paragraphs, that paragraphs are emotional and that sentences are not.” (Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas)
“There is no such thing as a natural sentence but there is such a thing as a natural paragraph and it must be found.”
“A paragraph is never finished therefore a paragraph is not natural. A paragraph is with the well acquainted. It languishes in mediocrity.”
“A sentence is a hope of a paragraph. What is a paragraph that is easy. How can you know better if you say so. A sentence is never an answer.” (All three from As Fine As Melanctha)
Got it?
What a lovely puzzle, what lovely clarity. Stay tuned.

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