Writers are not prodigies. We did not wake up one morning, reach for a pen and begin to write. Every single one of us was gleaned.
The words were gestating inside. They waited until the world had cultivated us. Then suffering bestowed instruction. Tragedy geared us up. Trauma released the uproar underneath. The words were given birth as we suffered. They grew as we survived. They transcended as we lingered.
No writer is irrelevant. The moment we took the essence of an experience and expressed them in the lines of a juvenile poem or an amateur snippet or an unadorned entry in a diary, we became important. From there, we culled verities from occurrences. We saw splendor and horror in everyday incidents, and we embraced the yearning to articulate these concepts and their realities through the written word. We let our courage speak. We allowed insight and discernment to steer us. We gave our convictions autonomy. We inhaled the universe and exhaled it in ink.
Each of us is an exceptional link. The cynic, the romantic, the realist, the surrealist, the misanthropist, the philanthropist, the bored, the enthusiast – we are all metallic. Connected, we become a formidable chain of a unique doctrine. Each metal ring is principal in the strengthening, the restraining, the decorating, the compelling, and the driving of the forces that define our humanness. We labor truth. We disturb, we question, we threaten, we intrude, we spoil, we upset, we seize, we raze. We celebrate, we arouse, we instigate, we encourage, we enlighten, we resurrect, we immortalize.
We steal time and write what we’ve stolen. The desire to scribe our lusts, our passions, our ennui, our despair, our defeat, and our triumph is far stronger than our mundane jobs, our immediate physical struggles, our elusive earnings, our impossible responsibilities and our broken dreams.
Question who you’re doing it for. Question whether or not your words are enough. Question the quality of the things you record and how you write them. But never question why you exist.
Imagine a literary apocalypse. A day when all written things disappear. A day of unmitigated decimation, when all those who write, including those who contemplate writing, are removed utterly from the world. Close your eyes and envision it.
Now, go on. Pick that “worthless” prose out of the trash. Write it again and this time give it flare.
We are necessary. We sacrifice ourselves by turning our souls to kindling. We burn through words so that others may understand their own burning. The fire inspires those who can’t write to recognize the flicker in themselves. Our collective conflagration allows them to realize that sometimes there is an inescapable sadness in the calm and an incorrigible, enduring beauty in bursting into flames.