Translation:Words are windows, or they are walls.
here's the full poem, i've seen it for the first time in the book "Nonviolent Communication: A Language of Life" by Marshall Rosenberg, which i highly recommend :)
Words are Windows (or They're Walls)
I feel so sentenced by your words I feel so judged and sent away Before I go I got to know Is that what you mean to say?
Before I rise to my defense, Before I speak in hurt or fear, Before I build that wall of words, Tell me, did I really hear?
Words are windows, or they’re walls, They sentence us, or set us free. When I speak and when I hear, Let the love light shine through me.
There are things I need to say, Things that mean so much to me, If my words don’t make me clear, Will you help me to be free?
If I seemed to put you down, If you felt I didn’t care, Try to listen through my words To the feelings that we share.
~ Ruth Bebermeyer
Learning a language is a way of communicating with other people, with the outside world (a window into other realities and cultures), but a language can can also be used as way to block other people, to create divisions between people (words as walls).
If you know a language, it's a window to communication; if you don't, it's a wall stopping you from understanding someone else.
I think it's not just about language, but about communication in general. Words being walls makes me think of the way politicians speak, using weasel words to obscure meaning instead of reveal it. Or the way we here in Australia use the terms 'illegals' and 'boat people' instead of 'refugees' to make people seeking asylum seem like 'the other', so we don't have to feel compassion, so we can put up walls between them and us.
Cxi tiu farigis mi pensi de: "Se mi mortus antau mi lernas parli cxu mono pagas por cxiam la tagoj mi vivis maldorma sed duono dorma.
This made me think of: "If I die before I learn to speak can money pay for all the days I lived awake but half asleep?"
*Awaits someone to correct mia vortoj