I write because writing is the frayed rope that secures my tenuous grasp on the shared delusion we call “sanity”. I write because I have things to say. I write because I have marks to make on the world.
I write because I have so, so many words somersaulting over each other in the troubled, challenged, foggy recesses of my mind – and they need to find their release. They need to fly, and to land, to take root, and to trace their own silver-spun routes to their homes in the fertile minds of others.
Words are my music.
But when I speak, those tricksy words are treacherous.
They don’t play by the rules – and the effort it takes to get them out in the chop-chop, twisted syncopation of speech, then to play helpless “catch” with my hands tied behind me; as equally tricksy, piercing, bullets are fired back at my exposed flesh, is almost more than I have within me. Sometimes, it is more than I have. And the words tumble to the ground and drown in tears.
The blood coursing through my veins threatens to engulf me, and the icicle finger tips, and the desert-dry mouth rob me of connection with self-expression.
But the leaden, weighty, black-white-black of words on a page is reliable, and safe, and free, and forgiving. And it contains my home – my refuge. It silences the tumult, and makes time stand still.
The time to write is precious – those gold sovereign seconds on the clock. Such magnificently treasured currency that it can be stolen from beneath hawk eyes. It is mercury slipping through glass. It is the hovering, shivering, silver needle in the sneezing haystack of bureaucracy – of fear, and panic, and endless impatient, entitled, fist-thumping demands.
And when that happens, I lose my “self”. It slips down the plughole with the waters of stolen time. And I find I am hopeless – homeless, and helpless; vulnerable, and drowning.
But those eternally vigilant, endlessly benevolent words on the page have always proved salvation to me.
And that is why I write.
And that is why I am a writer.