why I write
Because writing, like reading, takes me away.
Because there are stories to remember. Stories to explore again from new perspectives. And writing remembered stories begets remembering more stories.
Because the precision of words thrills me – for example, my husband told me of when our son first made the sign for ‘bird’. We celebrated. However, on the walk with my boy that followed I thought of owl, cormorant, hummingbird, blue jay, flamingo, robin, sparrow, ostrich, sea gull, pelican, chicken and so many more. ‘Bird’ then seemed as descriptive as ‘mammal’.
Because who, if not me, will record these advancements from baby to toddler, toddler to child and child to teenager?
Because of the gentle power to soften hearts and opinions.
Because I remember how Mike made everyone laugh with bizarre amazement when he showed how he could kick himself in the head from a standing position. I remember how Celia announced at the breakfast table that she had dreamt of hotdog trees. I remember that on the day after my mother’s 60th birthday the power went out and we planted petunias while the generator’s motor interrupted our serenity.
Because I can, with tempered confidence, explain the moon’s phases. I cannot yet visualize or explain why we only ever see one side.
Because I lost my favourite t-shirt somewhere in my travels and maybe you can help me find it.
Because my hollyhocks grew. My alley flower garden planted in honour of Blake’s uncle John yielded a humble bloom of flowers. I vow to invest even more into them next summer in hopes that they will flourish and remind us of what an impressive and exquisite man he was.
Because I want to be known. It’s a selfish desire that feels less selfish by the act of creating and sharing.
Because I want to gather the small moments that pass without notice if we don’t choose to notice. I want to bring them to the surface and clean them up just enough so that we can admire their imperfections and thus, their beauty.
Inspired by Why I Write Poetry by Major Jackson. Watch him perform it here. Thank you to Joyce for sharing it with me.
For folks in the Regina/Indian Head area, there are 10 tickets left to my concert at Cherry Lake on October 15th.
Many of you may know Saskatchewan writer and bird expert, Trevor Herriot. He and his wife, Karen, are land stewards and I’m in awe of them for so many reasons. This concert is on that land, hosted by those people.
If you’re interested in attending, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’ll give you the very simple details of how to get a ticket for $25, where the land is and how to get there.
This post is public. Please feel free to share it.