Duende and other mystical words

Since I spend so much of my time playing with words on the computer while writing romance novels, there are many days when I contemplate language. Love crosses language boundaries. And a love of language is a gift. Here are some of my favorite words from other languages.

1. Koi No Yokan Japanese – The sense upon first meeting a person that the two of you are going to fall in love.

2. Waldeinsamkeit German – The feeling of being alone in the woods

3. Wabi-Sabi Japanese – A way of living that emphasizes finding beauty in imperfection, and accepting the natural cycle of growth and decay. I find this useful in thinking about love.

4. Nunchi Korean – The subtle art of listening and gauging another’s mood. It could be described as the concept of emotional intelligence. Knowing what to say or do, or what not to say or do, in a given situation. (I like my characters to have some good Nunchi skills)

5. Duende Spanish – It’s original use was to describe a mythical entity that lives in forests, sort of like a fairy or a sprite, that possesses human beings and causes them to feel awe, fear, or a sense of beauty in their natural surroundings. Since being updated by the Spanish poet and playwright, Federico García Lorca, in the early 20th century, it is now used to refer to the mysterious power of a work of art to deeply move a person. I love how words and books can move us. Do you?


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