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Why I Write

This is all I want from life: for every minute lived with feeling to exist alongside me.

I write because I can’t help it. Thoughts and feelings spill out of my mind with every waking moment, like a child unable to control their crayon within the lines of a colouring book. I write because if I did not I would be driven mad, stuck on a carousel with more weight pressing me down with every rotation and no end in sight. I write because I’m scared. I am so scared, so often and no one will ever see it. Fear runs wild though my blood and even though I know it’s only in my mind I can still feel it snaking down my limbs, tying me down; if I did not dispel it with the ink from my pen I would stay tied forever.

I write because I feel. All too often things reach right inside me, invading me, pushing unapologetically past my body and down into the depths of my soul. My body may react by watering my eyes, sinking my heart and chilling my arms, but my mind needs words to understand why. I write because a human heart continues beating inside my chest despite feeling as though it may burst right out. I write because I love, so fiercely and so wholly that if I didn’t at least try to express it fully I would be unable able to carry on without being completely consumed by the fire of it all. I write because I have lost and it is the only way to fill the space left behind.

I write because I’m growing. The world is vast and varied and I alone am far too small in comparison. The words I write attach themselves to me as if they were muscle and bone, expanding out to the corners; the nooks, the crannies of life. I am an explorer and these sentences are my carrier, passageways that lead me into new territories, beyond boundaries. I write because I am not brave. Apprehension wears me like an old blanket, rarely retiring as I warm it with daily anxieties, unease and what ifs. My body, whilst competent, is not substantial, and my mind, whilst complex is not significant. No, I am not brave, nor substantial, nor significant. But as I write, I can be.  

I write because all I truly own are thoughts. I write because even when I find my notepads full, my fingers swollen and my eyelids drooping, I am never finished. I write because it cannot be censored. It may be imperfect and short of something beautiful but it’s the only honest stamp of myself I can leave on the world. Paper with pen marks mapping out my mind, hoping it may help some other lost soul navigate through theirs.

I write because the world changes me at every turn and if I didn’t, I would be lost. All the places I’ve seen, faces I’ve dedicated time to learning the lines of, conversations that have had me gripping at the edges of the world as if I might fall off- they would dull and rust with time, slowly being buried by the curse of forgetfulness and selective memory. I hope that words written in moments of passion will burn just as brightly as those moments for all of eternity. This is all I want from life; for every minute lived with feeling to exist alongside me as I grow old, creasing love, loss, agony and curiosity across my face, with the ease of a pen moving across a blank piece of paper, as I read back the exhaustive accounts of how simply being alive really felt - and so I write.

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