McCammon: Lyric

“I recall watching a TV show – ’77 Sunset Strip’ – where the hero walked into a theater named the Lyric, and I got to thinking about that word. I looked it up in my massive two-thousand-four-hundred-and-eighty-three-page dictionary Granddaddy Jaybird had given me for my tenth birthday. ‘Lyric,’ it said: ‘Melodic. Suitable for singing. A lyric poem. Of the lyre.’ That didn’t seem to make much sense in regards to a movie theater, until I continued following lyre in my dictionary. Lyre took me into story-poems sung by traveling minstrels back when there were castles and kings. Which took me back to that wonderful word: story. It seemed to me at an early age that all human communication – whether it’s TV, movies, or books – begins with somebody wanting to tell a story. That need to tell, to plug into a universal socket, is probably one of our grandest desires. And the need to hear stories, to live lives other than our own for even the briefest moment, is the key to the magic that was born in our bones.”

– Robert McCammon, Boy’s Life (p. 35)


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