I can still remember the handwriting test we took in Primary School. The one in pencil. The teacher looked carefully at my capital B and spoke encouraging words of a job well done. She settled a star upon the page but she didn’t give me a pen.
I watched everyone else take up their books. They all got pens.
I was not a brave child. I did not like approaching adults. My father once made my sister return a broken toy at the Cheltenham markets to teach her a lesson in bravery. She still talks about it now with the hurt of small child.
Yet I wanted my damn pen.
I found my voice and I got that pen but I sometimes feel like I haven’t quite graduated from a pencil. I see pens everywhere and their beauty is often crippling.
I write with a pencil every day. I push messy thoughts through a fine sieve and try to find some clarity. I learn things. I edit. I reconcile things. I edit. Back and forth. Back and forth.
Writing is revealing, it’s purifying and it’s educating. It’s finding your own voice and it’s sometimes asking for that damn pen.