I follow a blog by a mommy from South Africa. She writes real and deep and often, and I get courage from her going into the mothering world ahead of me.
Every Friday, she hosts a kind of free-write flash mob on her blog. This is how she explains it:
“On Fridays around these parts we like to write.
Not for comments or traffic or anyone else’s agenda. But for fun, for practice, for joy at the sound of syllables, sentences and paragraphs all strung together by the voice of the speaker. We love to just write without worrying if it’s just right or not. For five minutes flat. All on the same topic. Not sure how to participate – the step-by-step directions are over here: Here’s how we do it:
1. Write for 5 minutes flat with no editing, tweaking or self critiquing.
2. Link back here and invite others to join in .
3. Go and tell the person who linked up before you what their words meant to you. Every writer longs to feel heard. OK, are you ready? Give us your best five minutes for the prompt: – See more at: http://lisajobaker.com/2013/07/five-minute-friday-beautiful/#sthash.ub47n92a.dpuf“
SO…here is my unedited, five-minute contribution to the fun! The prompt: “WRITE”
A word spoken is a magical thing. Released into the space between speaker and hearer, it has the power either to create or destroy. Its meaning can be lost in tone or word choice, misconstrued by insecurities or word choice, forgotten or remembered for years. But it can never be unsaid.
All this power for a spoken word, that lasts only a moment in the vibrating air.
But a written word—or a string of them? Well, that has power with permanence.
Last night I began reading “1985”. Somehow I managed to skip reading this high school literature staple. I’m only three chapters in, and already I feel sick on behalf of Winston. He is caught in a world without tragedy or love, where truth is lie and he is not even sure of the date.
Knowing he commits the ultimate crime, he begins a journal. He writes. It is a physical extension of the few cubic inches between his ears that, until now, has been his only private domain. He writes in fear, but with reckless courage, because words on a page have the power of permenance to condemn him and make his thoughts real. He writes for a future that may never acknowledge or know him.
I feel thankful for a world without Big Brother, without a telescreen watching my every move. I can think without crime, write without fear.
But Winston has reminded me of my power.
A few taps, and words exist in a cyberspace that never forgets. A few careless keystrokes can have the power to build up or destroy in a far more permanent way than simply talking.