The Perfect Word

Arthur Stace found the right word. This elusive homeless man mystified Sydneysiders for decades by writing the perfect word wherever he could. Eternity. The perfect word, his gift to a young city perched on the edge of an ancient continent, came to him like a ringing call one day when he was in a church. He said the word was the only one that got the message across, that made people stop and think. It was still there, on the headstone of his grave, as I had discovered when we visited Waverley cemetery. Arthur Stace was almost illiterate and yet he achieved literary perfection. Eternity contained everything he needed to say. In one word he had written an entire poem, an unforgettable one. He chalked it on the footpaths and hoardings of the city over fifty times a day for thirty years. As you would, having found the perfect word.

From The Household Guide to Dying by Debra Adelaide, pp 144-145

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on July 16, 2008 10:32 AM.

2008 Melbourne Festival of Travel Writing was the previous entry in this blog.

Peter Carey Watch #7 is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.

Monthly Archives

Powered by Movable Type 4.23-en