Sometimes Avram Dehpour used words, marvelous English words, that he

had only read, and when he spoke the marvelous words,

no matter how intimately he felt them, their syllables, striking

the surprised eyes of his interested hearers, seemed all in

the wrong tones: he could not bring out, except in

writing that sublimely organized Anglo-Saxon speech.  Farsi was otherwise constructed;

now and then he borrowed the counterpoint of its ornate

melodies, but he would desist writing in his native Farsi.

He would not — he could not — speak to his family

in English; they knew no language other than their own.


Paraphrases from the novella Dictation by Cynthia Ozick.