A plank in reason
"I'll tell you what: you just about made a fool of yourself," said Fay. "You were just before trying to hit me with that plank. But you couldn't have done it. You don't know the way to fight." She squinted up one eye. "I had a whole family to teach me."
But of course, Laurel saw, it was Fay who did not know how to fight. For Fay was without any powers of passion or imagination in herself and had no way to see it or reach it in the other person. Other people, inside their lives, might as well be invisible to her. To find them, she could only strike out those little fists at random, or spit from her little mouth. She could no more fight a feeling person than she could love him.
Eudora Welty, The Optimist's Daughter