I Have To Write

I called one of my friends today.
And I spoke with her a while.
While we spoke,
She told me
To keep writing.

I remember
Fourteen months ago.
When someone I knew then
Told me the same thing.

Then a few months ago,
My boss
At the company
I used to work for
Said the same thing.
“Keep writing.”

My father’s said this
Many times to me.
And my doctor’s
Said it too.

I’m starting to realize
That more and more
Of the people
I call my friends
Are telling me
That I have to write.
That I shouldn’t stop
Ever again.
Like I have before.

In the past year
I’ve lost count
Of the times
I nearly stopped
Writing
Once again.

I almost stopped
In January.
When I realized
I would never talk
With any of the people
That had been my friends,
That I once worked with.

And I did destroy
The first blog
that I ever had.
I pulled it down.
With the intention
Of never writing anything
Again.

For some reason
I changed my mind.
And I started
A new blog.
And at first
I didn’t tell
Anyone I used to work with
Where it was.

I left things that way
For a time.
And then I remembered
The promise
That I’d made.
To the one I call
The Lenten Rose.

And I sent her the link
To the place
Where I’d started writing
Once again.

I almost stopped a second time.
On May 25th.
The day that everyone
I used to work with
Stopped reading
What I wrote.

But I didn’t.
I decided
That it didn’t matter any more
If the people
That I used to know
Elected not to read
Anything I wrote.

I wasn’t writing for them
Any more.
Not even
For the Lenten Rose.

I was writing
Because I knew
That there were people
That were reading
What I wrote.

The statistics
That WordPress provides
Told me that.

But I’d noticed something
Different
That I was starting to do.
That I hadn’t done
In almost
An entire year.

When this whole thing started,
Fourteen months ago,
There were things that I wrote
That were meant
Only for the Lenten Rose.

I don’t know
If she shared those words
With anyone
Or not.
And it doesn’t really matter
Any more.

Because the Lenten Rose
Is gone.
For in the end,
When all was said and done,
She turned out to be
Just like everyone
That I once worked with.

And I know
That just like
I will never hear
From the other people
That I once worked with.
I’ll never hear
From the Lenten Rose
Again.

But such
Is the way
Of life.
And I’m moving on,
Into the new life
I have now.

And in the past few months
I’ve written many things
That I meant
For individuals
I know.

More than I ever have
Before.

There was a time,
Just a year ago,
When writing
Took so very much
From me.
It took all my energy.
And left me drained.

But that doesn’t happen
Any more.
Because I’ve learned
From experience.
That I seem
To have a way
With words.

And that my way with words
Is a gift
That I can share
With everyone
As I do
Here on this page.

And a gift
That I can share
With friends.
When I wish to say
Something special
Just to them.

So I’m still here.
Writing.
Almost every day.
Some days more than once.
And if what I write
Gets read,
Or does not.
I’m OK with that.

Because I know
From the words
That my friends
Have said to me,
And the words
That are written
In my heart.

I have to write.

And so I will.
Until the day
That life
Makes me stop.

I have to write.

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