My Poetic Path

My journey…shared in poems, prose and photos.

It’s Only Words…


How many people have been hurt/damaged (sometimes permanently) by unkind words, lies or thoughtless gossip, spoken about them?

 I have worked for many companies and in several cities, over the years. Unfortunately in my experience, the office politics and gossip were usually the norm, not the exception. I steered clear of any of the snipping, bickering and back-stabbing. It wasn’t easy at times. And yes, there were times that I became the “target” of unkind words too.

Most amazing (to me) of all, the number of married women with children who were some the worst offenders. What kind of lessons were they bringing home, I wondered?

Looking back, I’m glad I held firm, remained true to my values and didn’t buy into the nastiness, taking sides etc.  just to be “part of the crowd”.

They may be “only words”. But what a powerful force  for good or for evil, they can be.

Also submitted for the OSI prompt: Murmer

Original photo courtesy of : Flickr

Author: Geraldine

I am a freelance writer, poet, artisan, avid book/product reviewer and award-winning cookbook author. I recently published the second volume of my new vegetarian cookbook series: -The Groovy Green Kitchen II: Simply, Super, Supper Soups and my fun and inspirational book, all about aging well: -Laughing AT the Grim Reaper! Gems of Wisdom for Aging Well I am also the author of: -The Groovy Green Kitchen: Weeknight Veggie Slow Cooker -Third Chapter, Second Chance (a mid-life romance) -Not Just for Vegetarians: Delicious Homestyle Cooking, the Meatless Way and the poetry collections: -Haiku Reflections:The Four Seasons (Volume i and II) and -My Poetic Path All titles available at, .ca, UK.... When I'm not writing or creating new recipes, I love to knit and crochet; usually with some "help" from feline friend, yarn-loving Mr. Cheddar! I hope you will visit and enjoy all of my blogs.Thanks for stopping by. Wishing You a Happy Week and Namaste! :-) You can also visit me at my new author's site:

27 thoughts on “It’s Only Words…

  1. This is a good post, Geraldine. What a neat idea to use the cooler, too.

  2. Love that opening “water cooler gossip” – and the other word “bubbler” is so close to “babbler”! Love the comment following too! I have always steered clear of the gossipy hornet’s nest! Constant buzzing with too much sting!

  3. The undercurrent of the murmur of gossip, insidious and hurtful.

  4. good post, and well done with the interpretation…a message for everyone..gossip can definitely be very hurtful…

  5. …murmurs of the brutal poisonous kind — most unfortunate…

    Here is my murmur

  6. Cleverly done. Yes, gossip causes so much trouble.

  7. I agree the gossip and leave long term affects on people and an organization. I am normally not in this loop but regularly see its effects in our company.

  8. The understatement at the end here is absolutely perfect, my friend. I have known this experience. Working as a school teacher, I see many women whispering in their little cliques and bad-mouthing others and causing all kinds of damage. I wish there were a way to root out these people.

  9. an office murmur at the water cooler..
    yeah, sometimes causes lot of hurt…

  10. so true. excellent poem on this sad topic, geraldine.

  11. Oh how true this is! I hear so much of this where I work… and can’t help but wonder how so many people have so much time on their hands. Wonderfully put!

  12. This type of murmurs at a water cooler can leave a bad taste for all concerened.

  13. This is a message we all agree with. Thanks.

  14. Hi SandyL, I was glad to find this “murky” image on Flickr. It’s what I had in mind.

    Hi Gemma, So nice to “see” you again. Thanks for stopping in.

    Hi Rinky, So true. 😦

    Hi Aayushi, I couldn’t agree more.

    Hi Rob, That’s what it is, poison. It is can have fatal and/or long term effects.

    Hi Tony, Thanks Tony, glad you enjoyed this work.

    Hi Loch Rob, Some people are caught in the middle of these situations, with no place to hide. It’s sad and its something that needs to be weeded out of the workplace. Employers must take complaints seriously. Harassment takes many forms.

    Hi Sandy C, When someone hasn’t experienced this type of behaviour, up close and personally, sometimes it seems to them that it is: “just words” . Sounds like you know of what I speak.

    Hi Vinay, Thanks for stopping in and I agree with your comment.

    Hi Cynthia, It is a very sad topic, isn’t it?

    Hi Mojo, Now that’s a good thing to consider. Why is there enough time for this BS at so many workplaces?

    Hi Maggie, A bad taste indeed, that can linger forever…

    Hi Robin, Good people can agree. The others, maybe not. Nice to see you again too Robin.

    Thank you for your comments, most appreciated, G

  15. Hi Geraldine…that was indeed a different and good take on the murmur. Thank you for sharing.

  16. Those water coolers have so much to answer for!

  17. Such wise words you speak…words can definitely hurt when used with thoughtless intention. I enjoyed your take on this prompt!

  18. No one is spared Geraldine. In any organization, the climate runs through…

    Thanks for sharing, reminds me how vulnerable I am too with being a victim of unkind murmurs…

  19. I like that word “etched”. Because it is true…those hateful things stay in our minds and are so hard to ferret out again.

    A wonderful poem on such an unkind topic.

  20. yes, words hold power and do have effects
    to use them with love wisdom and kindness is a gift
    your poem makes one ponder, thank you.

  21. Hi Swapna, Thanks for stopping by and also for the great prompt. I was inspired.

    Hi Stan, Some of the people who gather around them at times, certainly do. 😦

    Hi Sweetest, Thoughtless,cruel…no place in the workplace.

    Hi Amity, I’ve had my share of being on the receiving end of this kind of harassment. Long ago but never completely forgotten. I guess it’s time to forgive some people?

    Hi Ruinwen, The word etched seemed so appropriate as I wrote this, thanks friend.

    Hi Tammie, And what wonderful power words can hold for good. That’s the kind to use and to cherish.

    Thanks so much for stopping in, your comments and visits are appreciated, G

  22. I think you make quite a crucial point and that is, how people feel the pressure to bow to the gossip and take sides. It is only the strong person who can avoid that. I have been in work situations where gossip has ruined the relationships among staff members. It is such a shame. They are only words but they have such power because they are carelessly spoken. Powerful piece!

  23. Powerful words – murmurs of this type are the very worst and seem to take on a life of their own. Excellent response to the prompt!

  24. Hi Sel and Sue, Thanks for your thoughtful comments. Hope that all is well. G

  25. Careless words so easily poison the waters. Loved your take on the prompt!

  26. Excellent poem and such true words! Gossip murmured can be so unproductive in so many ways! Great interpretation!

  27. Hi Gabrielle and Patti,

    Thanks so much for your kind words. I enjoyed your interpretations too. Glad I checked my comments this a.m. and noted yours. Now, it’s time for another prompt at OSI! 😉

    Hugs, G

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