Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Writing, change, and bloody pen licences.

Tuesday 3rd of March

Today I write, like many days before, and I expect many days to come, I write. 

It’s a funny one the old writing for me, a varied relationship is a reasonable way to describe it. I have strong memories of lessons in spelling and handwriting at primary school. Year 6 spelling challenges that carried over from week to week. Strong students were presented with 16 or even 18 new words to attempt to accurately recreate in their spelling book, a fine challenge. At one time I remember languishing on 4. It still feels distantly painful. 

Handwriting held a similar incomprehensible element. Repeated attempts were required to gain the not necessarily coveted, but absolutely essential, pen licence. A rite of passage that contained its primary significance not in attaining membership into the elite pen club, but in departing from the radically undiscerning pencil mob. ’Slow down Michael’, ‘just print rather than use cursive’.      

Perhaps little has changed on those fronts over the years, however in some ways much has. These days I love the complicated and sensual journey that we can share with words. The way that through a mix of personal endeavour and the synthesis of the swirling language around us we can create little moments of feeling from the written word. A precious moment that you can feel, with an apparatus that is possibly something other than your brain, what is being written or read. 

I love writing, it has granted me much kindnesses and stimulation. Through both personal exploration and probably mainly internal clarification, and importantly connection to my community. 

In the last few years I have written both publicly and privately to a greater extent than at any other time in my life. The jostling experiences that I’ve been fortunate to be exposed to have at times been best understood through writing. 

I know I want to write, I think I should continue to write and I also occasionally find it very difficult to write. For four years I have shared some writing on this blog. For Stacy, and for me. The glory and disaster of it are splashed across the posts. My feeling today is that I won't write on here much more. Today, two years after Stacy died seems like a fair time to say that. 

I made a commitment this weekend regarding writing. A necessary commitment I think which currently I feel very optimistic about. The quantity of writing I’m planning on producing will increase, and the avenues of sharing those words with the community will also hopefully grow. All of our journeys continue in their own way, and so it is with this. 

Thank you for reading, and I look forward to writing again soon. 


  1. Hey mate,

    I have just been perusing through some of the old blog posts when I saw this pop up. Glad to see you are back on it.

    Seems hard to believe it has been two years since Stacy died. In that cliched way it both seems like yesterday afternoon and about a million years ago that I found out about it. I was in Niseko, Japan and remember looking up at the sky, framed by snow-clad pines and the naked bare branches of some deciduous trees and being overwhelmed by emotion. Feelings of pain, sadness, loss and guilt. Feelings of love and relief. Complicated, big feelings. Time has shown that overwhelming feelings like that eventually get broken down and the lumps and pain and sharp edges get worn smooth, but I don't reckon that they ever get fully washed away by the stream of time.

    Stacy's journey in this weird, weird thing we call life may have ended two years ago, but her life was shared with you and will always shape your life in many ways. I'm glad to have shared some of your life together, and to have known that crazy girl just a little.

    Keep writing mate. Some nuggets of gold will definitely fall out.

    I'm pretty sure Picasso never bothered with a pen licence.

  2. you have done good job its really informative for me.