The act of writing something down is quite often a clear expression of one’s dissatisfaction or discomfort with the usefulness of certain other tools of communication. One often prefers not to listen, speak or act and chooses to write. I have so far only spoken, listened or acted. Pinning down one’s thoughts on a piece of paper leaves one relieved and troubled. The comfort comes from the fact that in the process of writing my ideas find a permanent abode. I can knock at the doors of this cottage as and when I please. I may even choose not to be bothered and leave it forever locked and unattended. This small fiefdom and the concern for devising ways in which I may keep it secure from the onslaughts of the uncivilised is the source of all trouble and discomfort. To me these comforts and troubles arise the moment this difficult task of writing a piece has been accomplished. I will be so happy and content if this cottage offers me and my reader some solace or pathos as and when needed. I feel elated at the manner in which my words dwell this abode and enjoy their lives. They greet the visitors and offer them all possible hospitality. The fear that an unwanted visitor will soon come knocking grips me often. This little beauty would then be attacked and the little ones would bleed. Would make for a depressing sight. Readers are the most violent beings I know of.

So far I have not shared this premonition with my words but they do know about it. I have a sense of them sensing my fears. I think that is the reason they don’t multiply their kinds in my head so readily. I stand up to it and scratch some of them down forcibly. Don’t mind if they appear rough edged to you. I have an old rusted spoon. Need to change it now.


2 thoughts on “Slips”

  1. This is a very interesting and thoughtful post, which brings to mind some of my own thoughts on the act of writing.

    As a new university student in the early 1980s, my words came quickly and with little meaning; and usually as a means to complete a task, meet a deadline, and of course, to get a passing grade. While at times pleasurable, the act of writing was often a chore. I think my words during this period of my life didn’t take themselves too seriously.

    After years of work and a return to school, including fieldwork and graduate studies in archaeology, writing no longer was a task, but became a pleasure – especially when it involved my own research and publication of results. Ironically, my words now open to real criticism (especially in peer reviewed journals) were guarded and less free-spirited.

    As I continue to find writing a pleasant pastime, I have most recently started a blog on a subject which I have no formal education. I think these words are having the most fun ever.

    As a postscript, I have also come to the realization that some of my writing will also have a life beyond my own – albeit living a quiet one in the pages of esoteric scientific journals and books on seemingly subjects which few will ever read. I’m not sure how these words will fair after i’m gone. It would be fun to revisit them in another lifetime.

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