Writing as Therapy

I have never enjoyed writing until fairly recently. When I was in the eighth grade my English teacher suggested I might be Dyslexic. That diagnosis was the major impediment to the fear and frustration I felt toward the written word. My relationship with my teacher changed that perception. I have her to thank. She helped me to realize they were only words and the power I could have over them, if I chose, was greater than any power they would ever have over me.

My recent foray into writing is secondary to the thoughts which race through my head. I have a lot to say. I have admired those who speak so eloquently as their pen touched the page.

Joyce Carol Oates, who grew up just a short distance from myself, has always been an author whose work I respected and enjoyed reading. Ms. Oates wrote a work titled, “The Faith of a Writer.” Despite the poor reviews the book generally received (I personally thought some readers anticipated the book to be a “how to” book), I enjoyed the book. If I learned anything from Joyce’s words, it was, “Write your heart out. Never be ashamed of your subject or of your passion for your subject.” Thank you Joyce for those inspiring words. I have always maintained a strong belief in the opposite which has kept me from writing anything more than an envelope.

Writing, like running is my therapy. There are runs on which I have embarked  with a small voice recorder in my pocket. The size of this device makes it easy to be rapidly retrieved from my pocket and for my thoughts to be quickly noted. Other times I cannot wait for a run to be complete so I can return home, pick up my fountain pen and journal and begin to scribble my thoughts before they run away as rapidly as my breath. There have also been more runs than I care to think which I have chosen to abandon because the thoughts have become a tangled web of branches and beg to be recorded before further progress is allowed. It’s as if I was running along a trail and came across a tangled web of branches, my forward progress halted until the obstacle has been removed. Some of those runs have been resumed with relative ease while others find me walking, almost blindly wandering in search of the perfect words to end the story so my run could be continued. A similar scenario unfolds when I read. I have found myself engrossed in a book only to come upon a certain chapter or even an idea presented by the author. Often it appears as though the operator of the dam has opened the floodgates to full capacity and without warning. I find myself closing the book and rapidly searching for pen and paper as if they were a life vest without I would drown in these same thoughts.

These are the mornings for which I live. Unhurried. Fountain pen in hand, journal balanced on my leg, a steaming cup of coffee on one side and my dog Jack on the other. The only other accompaniment is the quiet; the solitude of the morning and the sunrise lighting my paper from the East.

These days seem magical. The words flow at a rate which seems impossible for my hand to match. I hope there is enough ink contained within the barrel of the pen to sustain the rapid pace at which i am attempting to capture those thoughts before they leave and are replaced by others. Those days, those times are few and must be cherished.

Spring is here…according to the calendar. One glance outside and your would beg to differ. Snow had fallen again; as if to thumb its nose at the calendar. The snow stopped and turned to rain. Within the next month the reality will match the calendar and these special days will once again be available for my enjoyment.



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2 thoughts on “Writing as Therapy

  1. What an inspiration your English teacher was for you and thank goodness you believed in her. It is quite apparent that you write from the heart. I love the many examples of figurative language you use in your writing. It colors the already eloquent words you write.

    1. Thanks Lisa for being a constant reader of my blog. It makes me smile to know my thoughts and words have touched someone as they have youched you.

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