I have always been in love with words.
There is something so liberating in putting thoughts into paper, of seeing whole worlds spring forth from the point of a pen or across the screen of a computer.
You might seem trapped within the four corners of a page, and yet you are free, for the words have a way of spilling into your reality, of engulfing you in another universe, of showing you what is possible and making you believe in the impossible.
Words have a way of making you feel, and words have a way of making you wish you couldn’t feel anything at all.
Words can mend what has been broken, and words can break what has been thought as indestructible.
Words remind you of the truth, and words embellish lives with lies.
Words can shed you light in the darkness, and words can plunge you into an abyss of despair.
Words have power. Power uses words. There is power in words.
Using words—writing them down, expressing them—is neither easy nor hard and at the same time both easy and hard. There are times when something is at the tip of your fingers but it can’t seem to get out, the same way some words rest at the tip of your tongue but remain unspoken, because of pain, because of fear, because of hesitation. Then it’s too late, and you cannot say anything, you can’t express anything, and the words get stuck in your throat, not unlike words that you scratch against paper only to discover that the ink has run out.
But when you find the will, the energy, the encouragement to drive those words out, to let them breathe and live in this world while painting their own, then you will know that the struggle was worth it and that sometimes, a push is all the pull you need.
At the end of the day, isn’t that what life is about—the balance between ease and hardship, the difference between mere surviving and living? Words let you draw lines in the sand, and words let you decide on which side you’ll ultimately stand. Words may hurt, and words may heal, and words are both weapons and shields.
To be able to wield words in both capacities is a great privilege indeed.
Maybe I cannot brandish the weapon and heft up my shield in a way befitting of a true warrior—in a way that would have felled empires and given rise to new ones in place of the ruins—but I am doing what I can to get there, and someday, I will create my own universe on the palms of my hands.
For now I will whet the weapon with a stone made of longing for the written word, and I will shine the shield with oils of perseverance and hope.
Soldiers fight. Musicians play. Writers write. They say that actions speak louder than words, but isn’t it also true that the pen is mightier than the sword?