• a. martins

Writing with a capital W

The things we care about are never apparent, but so become when we stop looking for them. It is the way snow falls that reminds you of your grandmother’s porcelain salt shaker; it is the steam that rises from a not-too-distant farmhouse that brings alive memories of that one German sauna where you saw all kinds of body that exist; it is the living absence of any three people you knew you loved but could only confirm when their smell was just a metonym on your blank stare. I never knew I cared about writing until I did. Even now as I write, and deeply understand it is more of a spontaneous, fluid flirt between my hands and some corner of my mind, I cannot articulate the why which lies beneath. For one, I write to discover—could it be the answers for my pressing dilemmas are hidden behind that semicolon break? I often do not know what I am writing about. Yet, it seems to find a way to reveal itself to me, sometimes it is an unexpected punchline at the end of my sonnets, sometimes it is a sentence that acquires a life of its own when put to paper. Curiously, I only discovered I wrote to discover by, well, writing. I had kept a few odd journals throughout my life, mostly during times of personal hardship, but I did not think those were Writing with a capital W for wanting to write. Still, as I look back through those pieces, I see how I ached for expressing myself and allowing the innumerous racing thoughts inside me to find home elsewhere.


Perhaps I write to love myself and, in some innocent desire, embrace the someones I used to be as I dialogue with them on the pages. As I read, I encounter the selves I were, the ones that I seem to no longer be. Their contents are shaped differently, their diction varies in complexity, their identity is diffuse. Their voices are ever changing. There is sometimes nothing that connects me to them. Their facts, things I certainly knew and lived, are novelty when not fiction to me. Sounds, places, people, I speak to them as if they belonged to others. Yet, somehow it all remains mine. Somehow, I remain mine. Writing with a capital W I relinquish control. In a reversal of roles, I no longer write but become written in the process. Reconstituted. Rendered legible. I write to discover myself, but not to find definite answers. I write to honor the stories I was told, the people and places, the feelings I feel must be continued and shared beyond my body. My eternal subjects, no matter the context or syntax that brings them to light.

(am) a. martins