Hands raised as the students answered my challenge, “What modifiers can we add to these nouns and verbs? How creative can you be?”
Young faces, not yet wrinkled, with no worry lines between eyebrows. Fresh voices not yet affected by too many years or hard living.
I looked at them and found hope.
Most of them could not imagine ever becoming a writer, but the room was full of their creativity. They were unaware that at some point in life, God might touch a shoulder and say, “Write the words that I give you.”
We chatted about the writing process, and I encouraged them to read, read, read and write, write write. They told me the genres they like – fantasy, sci-fi, historical fiction and more. I imagined them writing in those areas, then creating new genres similar to the sudden revelation of the dystopic Hunger Games.
They are headed for college, these Senior English students at Cair Paravel School in Topeka. Just one year away from pursuing their dreams.
Three of them love a grandparent who lives in the fog of Alzheimer’s. I hope to someday read one of their stories, written from the viewpoint of a young heart, telling the world how it feels when Grandpa no longer remembers you.
Whether or not they become writers, I see in them the future of scientific discovery – persevering to find a cure for Alzheimers. Perhaps some will be politicians who march past compromise, then change the course of history. Some will become parents who raise the next generation of wordsmiths. Others may join the clergy and spend a lifetime raising a congregation.
Whatever path they take, I hope some will pursue writing, to find joy in crafting the same 26 letters into words, then push forward to see their bylines in print.
But mostly, I see in these young, the larvae of new ideas, the energy of not-yet-used-up corpuscles, the vista of anything possible.
Hope multiples with youth, for in them we look forward to the next generation who will do life better, speak more clearly and spread God’s truth through the beauty of words.
©2014 RJ Thesman – “Intermission for Reverend G” – http://amzn.to/1l4oGoo
Even wrtiting about writing, you are so creative. Even though, to my mother’s dismay (and possibly mine), I am 33 years past my senior year in high school (are there some comma splices in that dependent phrase?), hope starts to stir up in me when I think about writing something for others to read. Sigh.
It’s never too late to start, Debbie. Flannery O’Connor said if you have survived childhood, then you have a story to tell. You can do it !
Well then, I have many stories to tell! Thanks for the encouragement!