Western Friend logo

“Amost Right” is Not “Right”

Anthony Manousos, Mary Klein
On Captivity (January 2018)

Dear Editor: I deeply appreciate your publishing my poem “On Garbage” in the Nov/Dec 2017 issue of Western Friend, but I was disappointed that a word was omitted from the penultimate line. It should have read:

Only love matters. Only love turns junk into jewelry,

A crown of thorns into a crown of light.

The word “ jewelry” was omitted, spoiling the rhythm, alliteration and meaning of the final two lines. Having been editor of this magazine, I know how easy it is to overlook typos like this, so you are forgiven this minor but significant mistake. As Mark Twain aptly noted: “The difference between the almost right word and the right word is really a large matter. ’tis the difference between the lightning bug and the lightning.”

– Anthony Manousos, Orange Grove Meeting, Pasadena, CA (PYM)


Dear Anthony: Thank-you for forgiving me for making this careless cut-and-paste error with your poem. I inflicted a similar injury on a poem by Rosemary Wells in the July/August 2014 issue of Western Friend. Consequently, I was particularly embarrassed to learn that I’d made essentially the
same mistake a second time with your poem.

I do know it’s a lot of work to find “just the right words.” I can only imagine how upset you and Rosemary must have felt to see your poems misrepresented in public by me. I am sorry for not being more careful.

As it turns out, Way Has Opened to make space on these pages to publish your poems again (and a couple more.)

Thanks for your support of Western Friend.

– Mary Klein, Western Friend

Poetry forgiveness education errors

Return to "On Captivity" issue