Time. Time is my greatest limiting factor when it comes to writing. Biology textbooks, dishes, and sleeping consume the time I have for putting pen to paper. Or rather, in my case, putting text to Word documents with the tapping of fingertips. But if I do not have time to write in a physical form, no need, assignment or desire can capture my thoughts in the same way that writing can.
As the author of our workbook puts it: “allow that text to spark other texts, ghost texts (bastard texts?) that are born because of the communion between the written text and the experience of the reader” (65). Well, flint struck stone on my walk back from Saga, as I noticed the yellow jacket and red scarf of the girl walking in front of me. Red and yellow, I thought. Ketchup and mustard; what an ugly color combination. And then the spark began glowing brighter, thought in the style of our dear workbook author. We were both walking fast, me and ugly jacket girl, stretching our strides over the slushy asphalt, our breaths building up in puffs of steam as we worked to escape winter’s whore-ish fingers.
We neared the door, hands already fingering our keys. That fumbling awkward moment– who can pull her keys out faster, who should open the door?– was interrupted by the Hipster with his cigarette smell, bare, hairy feet. “Nice jacket,” he told the girl. She hesitated, dazzled, and I breezed onward, driven by cold.
The door swung open for me, held by that guy that my friends teased me about. I never bothered to learn his name; he had a crush on me. I knew from the way his erect wrist held the heavy door open. From the way he spoke only to me last Thursday in my best friend’s room when he came in to borrow a packet of Mac and Cheese. And I would know from the glint in his glasses when I held the next door open for him.
Is this allowed? I wondered as I climbed the stairs. And I’m wondering it now, as my nails clack down on the keys, making disjointed rhythms and beats, capturing the mindless ramblings of a few minutes ago. Am I allowed to use these journals to do a bit of creative writing? To practice blowing that spark into a fire?