Is what a question?
Is that a question?
What is a question?
Why do we ask questions?
Why do I answer questions?
How many questions can you answer a question with?
Are you asking?
Then I’m dancing.
It’s a silly game. The question business. But it certainly helps.
Questions are useful things. That mark is a useful piece of punctuation. It’s a pause. That raising of the tone. If it functions properly. It makes one stop and think.
That’s a useful response to most things (bear attack aside…there you’ve just got to hope that your instincts are well trained and your bear identification skills are up to scratch).
Take time out to ponder a question. It’s a habit I’m getting into. Slowly realising that there’s actually at least five hundred words to say about even the most stupid questions (ahem).
There’s normally so much more than that. It becomes a struggle, I’m frustrated by not being able to answer fully enough.
If this is an answer?
That’s the anecdotal winning answer of course. Though I don’t know how mythical it is. It’s a stupid question. But there aren’t stupid questions.
Perhaps it’s just a useless question.
Yet here I am, still talking.
Is this process useful?
For me. I don’t know about for you. Sometimes I’m just clawing for words, struggling to approach the word limit. But it’s great practice. As a writer I can feel my ‘craft’ improving. Or at least my ability to clap like a sea lion on demand.
Which has to to be useful, right?
Is this really what the question set out to discover?
Does that even matter?
Does a question really have a goal?
Is any exploration interesting?
Sometimes I feel like I’m cheating. But then, some questions are definitely asking for trouble (ahem).
I should have expected this from the bear hunter.
Asking questions is probably nothing like hunting bears.
Though I guess there’s still that same problem. There’s probably as many answers as there are bears in the woods.
Are answers endangered?
If a question shits in the woods, and nobody’s around to listen, does the pope get involved?
I think, despite my part in this, questions are more important to me than answers. Answers tend to layer up, and have a tendency to be wrong.
There are no stupid questions (ahem). But more importantly, there are no wrong questions.
I think that’s why I do tend to raise more questions with my answers. At least I hope I do. I hate to think that a structure this much about rushing and experimenting and guessing and bluster would be didactic.
It’s hard not to be. In a way, the briefness often crushes out any doubt. Doubt takes too many words.
This is something to avoid.
Perhaps I should add question marks to the end of all my questions?
Or every line for that matter?
It would probably break the rhythm?
But would it help?
Is this an answer?
Illustration by Adam.