The Silence of Paper

Sarah - North Las Vegas, Nevada
Entered on October 15, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30
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The Silence of Paper

I believe in the silence of paper. The joy of being able to write things down and let my soul seep onto empty pages. Knowing that I’m the only one that gets to decide if others are aloud into my secret world of words. Words that let me express what I feel and what I see. Words that let my senses explore things they don’t fully understand. I find an outlet into my insight and a door into the secrets of my soul. The quiet reassurance of my paper helps me tell myself how I really feel, how I see the world.

I found out when I was thirteen years old that I was clinically depressed. I couldn’t express my feelings. I let everything be jailed inside of me without an escape. Until I discovered the silence of paper. Then there was no stopping me, I wrote everything I felt, every emotion screamed unheard in the pages of my yellow notebook. I wrote pomes, I still write pomes to let the hurt out. My Mother took me to a therapist, a terrifying experience. There my pomes became evidence against me, and for a moment I doubted the silence of my precious paper. But I couldn’t give up writing the words that spilled from my pen. I was hooked, and my paper became my secret, my writing was hidden from my family, from my therapist. I was good at lying, on the surface, and I began to hide the feelings of hurt even more. I couldn’t lie to my flat sheet of trusting paper. In time my silence grew so perfect that I was dismissed from the therapy sessions. My paper became my therapy and I still live in the silence of paper. Occasionally letting people into my little world, where things become the way that I see them, the way I know them.

The freedom that paper gives me amazes me everyday. Things that I can’t touch become real and tangible as I see them appear on paper. Love is understood, pain is captured, hate is kept, and joy is explosive. All on the paper that promises to keep it, to hold it and to let it be. Spoken words are eventually lost, but on paper, words become history, feelings become real, and I am free to let my soul wander and break the bounds of being “normal.”

There are pages and pages of written words and they are silent until we decide to read them and make them speak. I believe in the motion and sound of pen against paper, or the quite ticking of computer keys. All secret until we tell them to be known. The fire that so often burns inside of me screams to be let out and becomes so intense that it threatens to burn me from the inside out. Yet this fire is taken from me by paper, my pencil cools the overwhelming burning. For some music, or sports, or love, or paint, or some other form of expression puts out this fire, but for me a simple piece of paper will do. Paper will let me feel, let me touch and let me tell. My world is tapped into by reading my words, on my silent paper that for so long helped me get through. I believe in the silence of paper, the best secret keeper I’ve ever met.

-Sarah Anderson