Will we be known only for the number of burgers that were served?
|Would You Like Fries with Those Thoughts?
by Marilyn Mackenzie
"There are a thousand thoughts lying within a man that he does not know till he takes up a pen to write." William M. Thackery
What a wonderful way to explain what happens when I sit down to write. My mind goes in various directions, especially when writing by hand. Perhaps my mind is unlocked differently when the pen races over the page than when my fingers hammer at a keyboard. Often, the words are almost illegible, even to me.
Oft times, as pen and paper come together about one thought, another thought wishes to be released as well. I must pause and take out a second sheet of paper. I've learned to keep another page handy for making a list of possible topics about which to write or to just scribble miscellaneous words, thoughts and phrases that only the recesses of my mind truly understand now, but will develop, perhaps, later.
I've noticed that as I sit to write just one story, hours can sometimes elapse and 3 or 4 stories are the result. Yes, there are a thousand thoughts lying within me most times.
I'm saddened that more people don't write, are not encouraged to write. In the past, every girl wrote her innermost secrets in diaries. As women, though, they may not have continued journalizing.
Boys were never encouraged to write their feelings, thoughts and fantasies in diaries. They were not encouraged to have feelings. What a loss this may be for our world.
In the past, great men of old wrote letters, grand letters many of them, which were printed as books after they died. Our heritage, our history, was penned daily by statesmen and leaders, by prisoners of war, even by simple women of the prairie – all people who kept diaries or journals about their own lives.
I fear that our history, as read by future generations, will be only what journalists have written in the newspapers – a mere who, what, when, where, why and how – but lacking heart and soul, lacking feelings.
These thoughts came to me last evening. This morning, as the television chattered in the background, making me think I wasn't alone in this sometimes rather dreary apartment, I heard some encouraging words. I paused in my writing to discover that some of our young people are, indeed, keeping diaries – on the net. My joy was short-lived, though, as I realized these writings would be rife with Internet shorthand, with things like "BTW" (by the way) and "LOL" (laugh out loud) that future generations may or may not understand. They are not practicing good writing skills, trying to sound profound in those diaries, for they can actually share their passwords and read each other’s diaries. They must, therefore, sound like their peers. If someone is looking over their shoulder, they will surely not share their innermost thoughts and feelings. My joy was, indeed, short-lived.
Yes, each person does have a story within waiting to be told. We should encourage others around us to write, to paint, to create musical scores, to rhyme, to show the true essence of themselves. To not do so would, indeed, be a loss to us today and a tragedy for future generations. To not do so may mean that we will be known only for the number of burgers that were served.