Why I Write

I write because there is no one left in my life who knew me before I knew myself.

I write because I can talk to the paper and not be interrupted or misunderstood or frozen mid-sentence by a quizzical stare from a listener’s eyes.

I write because I can’t (nor would you want to watch me) sing or dance or paint or sculpt or provide anything else of artistic value to the universe other than what I can create with my paper and pen.

I write because my days are numbered; I have less days to live than I have already lived, and the abstraction of mortality is waning, replaced by the very concreteness of careening years.

I write because I kept my mouth shut for too many years of my life. I write because I could exorcise the ghosts of the past, the goblins of the present, the amorphous fears of the future wielding a cheap plastic-barreled pen and a college-ruled notebook.

I write because words spoken are swallowed by time. Words written are meals cooked today for a banquet to be held later. I write because I have lived an unexpected life and the surprises–both full of dread and full of awe–would otherwise drift uncharted.

I write because I want my children to know me, not mother me or wife me, or sister me, or aunt me, or grandmother me. But Christa Me. The deep and the shallow places. I want them to have access to bits of my soul, perhaps slices of me that they may not hunger for until I am no longer here to feed them.

I write because, in doing so, I shape the memories, give them words that will be my eternal life breaths.

Why do you write, paint, dance, sing, create….?

3 replies
  1. Jo-Anne Clough
    Jo-Anne Clough says:

    Christa, just beautiful. What amazing words you just constructed. I, also, have no other talent and despair that I do not have the writing talent. I have tried and it doesn’t please me. Some of us only have what we do in life. I teach and for me, it is the only thing that calms my soul. I know you felt that way too. I just can’t stay away from it. I am also so glad you are writing. You are inspirational and know how to reach the core of people. Please, never stop writing. Your old friend,

  2. christa
    christa says:

    You’re a treasure, and I still marvel (and thank) Natl. Boards connected us, and TEN years later…still going strong, and we’ve never met in person. That’s going on my bucket list!

    And knowing you’re still fighting the good fight is a relief to me and a gift to the students who have you.


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