“Letter Perfect” by Alice N. Persons

#58 in an ongoing series of posts celebrating the alphabet


I’ve always had a thing for the letter “O.” Hardworking and versatile with many shades of pronunciation in English, its simple circular shape (eternal and open) is pleasing to the eye. Lacking any sharp edges, smooth, amiable O is happy any side up and is always ready to roll.

As a distinctive exclamation, O is a word unto itself and knows how to command our attention in verse as well as song (Shakespeare was especially fond of O):


O Romeo, Romeo, wherefore art thou Romeo? (Romeo and Juliet)

O curse of marriage! (Othello)

O brave new world (The Tempest)

O that this too too solid flesh would melt (Hamlet)

O Captain! my Captain! Our fearful trip is done . . .(Walt Whitman)

O perfect Love, all human thought transcending (Dorothy F. Gurney)


Such heft, such strong emotion! Sometimes, only O will do. 🙂

If it seems like O is always looking at you, it’s because it evolved from the Egyptian hieroglyphic symbol for the human eye. And O is the only letter whose name creates its shape on the speaker’s lips.

Say it now: “O.”

Perfect letter, perfect love.



“Olives” by Youqing Wang (2017)


by Alice N. Persons

~ for Dennis Camire

let us praise O
so round, friendly,
the circle with no opening
a letter of distinction:
Ovid, Odysseus, Ozymandias
of odd instruments,
oboe and ocarina
traveler to exotic places — the
Orient, Odessa, Opalocka, Oz.
Imagine the peculiar all-O diet:
okra, olives, oatmeal, Oreos, oranges,
osso buco, or oolong tea!
The natural world would greatly miss O —
that ocelot in the oleander,
the owl perched in an oak
and the osprey winging over the orchard,
where an opossum feigns sleep.
Some O names make us laugh —
Ophelia Butt, Olive Oyl, Paddy O’Furniture,
Oprah as Orca
and think of the great Oscars —
Wilde, Levant, Peterson, Meyer, and
the sleek golden Hollywood prize.
Where would sexy writing be without
Oral, orgasm, onyx and opal, the story of O?
O, most perfect letter,
you contain so much that is important —
and best of all, you are always
in love.

~ from Never Say Never (Moon Pie Press, 2004)


by Clover Robin




Is that a great last line or what?

My one and only O, you are sooooo rOmantic!

Do you have a favorite O word?

I especially like olio, ort, and oose (furry dust under the bed). Maybe it’s because oose is plentiful at our house. There’s also something about double O words that really appeal to me:









I marvel, too, at how differently double O’s ask to be pronounced:










(Try to steer clear of boogers and poop.)


O likes to keep us on our toes!

Don’t you love that O is also in poetry (onomatopoeia has got to be one of the best words ever)? And of course there’s Mary Oliver, Frank O’Hara, and Alice Oswald. One of my favorite lines in literature: “Hey, Boo!” (I have a t-shirt). 🙂

Speaking of good people, we mustn’t forget Oprah and Obama!



Hey, my blood type is O. And my Korean middle name is Ok Soo (translates as “Precious Jewel”).

Most important: FOOD, COOK, BOOK. Says it all, doesn’t it?

O, you are my love. Wanna smooch? 😀






















Before you go, here’s a little breakfast-o courtesy of Blue Bear and Mr Cornelius: 





The lovely and talented Laura Purdie Salas is hosting the Roundup at Writing the World for Kids. Waltz on over to check out the full menu of poetic goodness being shared around the blogosphere this week. Happy Weekend!



Certified authentic alphabetica. Made by hand just for you with love and oomph.


♥️ This post has been brought to you by the ever observant, optimistic letter O, who’s very happy you visited today.

Copyright © 2020 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.

38 thoughts on ““Letter Perfect” by Alice N. Persons

  1. Ooo! How fun that you featured this “letter of distinction.” Some of my favorite foods are o-shaped (cheesecakes, quesadillas, pies). A delicious letter. (The orchis is so sweet!)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. O Jama you Precious Jewel! This post is a poem! Thank you! I think my favorite “o” might be in the word “hope” which is round and delicious for sure… and Lewis Carroll’s “O frabjous day!” is what I need on a t-shirt, because I think it at least once a day. xo

    Liked by 1 person

  3. “Outrageous” has become a recent ‘o’ word used “too often”, sad to say. I remember loving the old joke using “orange”, still a fun favorite: “Orange you glad I’m coming to see you?” and on. It’s an Over-the-top post Jama which will have me noticing “O” words all the day! Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know what you mean about Outrageous — in view of things that have been happening recently, it doesn’t seem strong enough. I like those old orange jokes too — but sadly, the color orange has taken on a deragatory meaning. I can’t eat Cheetos anymore either. That person has spoiled a lot of good stuff.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. O, what a delight! I especially loved “that ocelot in the oleander,
    the owl perched in an oak
    and the osprey winging over the orchard,”

    I, too, am a fan of the double o. My next picture book is SECRETS OF THE LOON, featuring Moon Loon. And I love the word bamboozle (which is not in book–nor is boozy, floozy, or doozy).

    Thanks for this post that made me smile, Jama!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hooray for double o words. Can’t wait to see your new picture book, Laura. Love Moon Loon, and also the words you listed, especially bamboozle. 🙂


  5. Appreciations! You are the O-bliging poet with your scoop of lovely Os lyrical essay, dear Jama!

    I will submit one of my favorite, my not-striving, humble O words: ordinary.

    You are NOT ordinary. But I like to think that outside, outrageous, balloons and baboons could color even an ordinary day.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. LOL. Obliging and ordinary are both good words, Jan. You’re right about the power of baboons and balloons to brighten things up — and we really need brightening up. Thank you!


  6. O! My favourite “o” word is…
    OWL! (Surprise!)

    What is the source of that delightful “O for the owl that flies out in the night…” poem?

    I also like the double-o word “moose.”

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Oh, Jama…you’ve really Outdone yourself with this pOst. It isn’t quite Ostentatious … but it has Oeuvre. I had such a fun visit today. Thanks for the Xs and OOOOOOOs.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. This post has left me swOOning and Over-the-mOON about the letter O. My parents used to have a koi pond and I loved all the little O’s their mouths made when my mom approached at feeding time. As for a favorite O word? I’m rather fond of the exclamation OOF!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I like picturing those little fishy mouths waiting for their food. 🙂 Oof is not a word I normally use but perhaps I should try it . . .


  9. O boy, what a fun post! As a nurse my favorite O words would have to be: Oxygen, Optic, Ovary, OB, & Orthopedic, and my favorite book series, Outlander. Thanks for opening my optics to the wonders of the O.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. O thank you so much for this lovely O fOcused pOst, it’s pOsitively Out-Of-this-wOrld!!! And O what a wOnderful middle name you have Jama–you’ve always shined preciOusly in my mind. I’ve always been attracted to nOnsense and silly sounding words like pOppycOck and OObleck, and there are sO many mOre Outstanding O’s Orangutans, Opera, banjO-which I’m trying tO make time fOr… Thank YOU frOm the bOttom and tOp Of my heart, xOxOx


  11. Well, thanks to you and this gorgeous post, I have a new respect and admiration for the letter O. Those pages from the alphabet books was a special treat, I loved the charming illustrations.

    Liked by 1 person

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