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I come back (a writer’s manifesto)

I come back to my words.

Over and over again, I come back to the smooth glide of pen on paper or the rhythmic caress of fingers against the keys of my keyboard, worn smooth and soft with use.

I come back to my writing because it brings me back into myself, back into the person I have always been, but who I sometimes forget myself to be.

I come back because the words bloom in my chest like petals unfurling in the flustered warmth of my unsteady heartbeat.

I come back to my writing because when I was a girl I used to take my journal and sit under a tree and when my pen touches paper today I can sometimes still feel the rasp of tree bark pricking into the skin of my back.

I come back because my words feel sun-soaked and luscious as they reverberate in my head and their warmth tingles as the thoughts race each other down my arms toward where a miracle of biology transmutes the stuff of dreams into ink, slowly drying on paper.

I come back to my writing because writing was always the thing I did for me. It was the way I chased away the ghosts on lonely October nights and the way I passed my lunch breaks in high school. My writing was the way I busied myself in my efforts to feel less alone.

I come back because the words guide me ever closer to that hopeful and dreaming person I once knew myself to be.

I come back to my writing because every time I put pen to paper — it pushes me a little bit farther back into me.

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