Sometimes, nothing’s what you want to say.

I’m sitting here now, listening to hail tap onto concrete outside, to thunder passing into the distance, as the rain fades, wondering why that worries me.

Growing up, I used to write. Was it a passion or an obsession? I don’t remember.

I do remember that I had no audience. But I wrote to one anyway.

What did I say?

I had an Emily Dickinson phase. Instead of punctuation, dashes. Now I punctuate obsessively. Edit, revise, erase. When did that happen?

I remember that the dashes came first, the Emily Dickinson later. I was relieved that someone else had written that way before me, then upset that I didn’t think of it first. How unoriginal.

Words. I wrote words. I tested their sounds, filled sentences full of airy assonance, tacked consonants into tight parades across my screen. Snap. It was paper then. Do I remember?

Sometimes, I still put pen to paper. Test it. Wait to see what it could be.

Ideas now are my currency. And I wonder why I never stop to wonder when they became my master. When ideas became a thing to capture, instead of something that could capture me.

Is it wisdom when we stop looking at words for what they are and start molding them into what we want them to be? Or something less impressive?

Once, my greatest fear was that my words were written where they’d stay: tucked away in notebooks, hidden away, forgotten.

Now it’s that I worry too much about what I say. That I’ll lose the courage to say it anyway.