I was going through my friend Michal’s old posts and I found this. It’s beautiful, and touches my right in my blood-pumping-organ. This post is like my own thoughts in Michal’s own unique voice.
Thanks for sharing this, חברה.
“I wish you knew sign language,” she added rather wistfully. “Barriers fall right away in sign.” (Story of B – Daniel Quinn)
I’m not sure if I can describe what happens in my mind when I use American Sign Language (ASL). It’s something that has developed gradually, as I learned more about how the language works – and hence gained deeper and deeper respect for it.
You see, ASL is so much more than symbols to replace spoken sounds. It has its own grammar, its own sentence structure – and its own ways of expressing emphasis, emotion, mood.
Communication in ASL is not just about the motion, but the hands’ placement in relation to the body, the direction they move, one’s facial expression.
I grew up surrounded by sound. Even now, music is a nearly constant companion.
But when I sign, I stop listening for the sound. I’m entirely entranced…
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