Why I Write

By Maria Kaserer

I write because I can better put my feelings on a piece of paper than keep them locked up in my heart. Writing down emotions I feel or thoughts I have in one particular moment makes them everlasting for me. Unforgettable moments in a love relationship stay with me forever. Like the first time my boyfriend called me by the nickname he gave me, the moment he promised me that he would keep my heart safe forever or that one night we planned to go out on a fancy date night but ended up cuddling and watching a movie in bed. Yet, for me there is something unique in the way you remember such moments and emotions if they are immortalized as written words.

Something magical happens when I type on my keyboard or scribble in my notebook: Memories I have of a specific situation, no matter if influenced by heartbreak or overwhelming happiness, get even more intense as soon as I write them down. Words allow emotions and feeling to become more tangible. Playing with synonyms, creating similes or metaphors, describing a single moment in time with the most lyrical adjectives there are, all this allows me to experience those feelings I want to grasp with my words all over again. I want to capture my emotions and try to echo them in my writing as precisely as they were in that moment. Not for anyone else to share with, but just for myself.

Since I am an introvert I would never feel the urge to share something so intimate with anyone other than myself. When I was a child, I used to write small poems about banal things for my parents to gift them on Christmas or their birthdays. Looking back, I know those poems were no good, even though I felt like Goethe reborn at that time. Because they did not give insight into my emotional world, I did not mind when my mother read them out loud to other people. Once when I was about eight years old, a short story about a forest fairy who I believed to be my best friend, was published in a newspaper. Then again, I did not care about that because it was a made up story and did not reveal any real feelings.

As I got older I completely abandoned writing short stories and developed a growing interest, or better fascination, for poetry. Inspired by the works of Julia Engelmann, Rupi Kaur, Lili Reinhart and Courtney Peppernell, I experimented with words, how they rhyme and how the feelings I tried to express were best put into words. Right from the start it was clear to me that I would have to write in English because I could not make German sound soft, lyrical or romantic. Another observation I made rather quickly was that, even though my texts were inspired by poetry, they often did not have to rhyme in order for me to like them. My poems represent intense romantic emotion in verse, often as extended metaphors:

If your kisses were music,
we would waltz all night.
If there was a color to resemble your soul,
I´d paint all my walls with it.

 Sometimes, they are only single sentences, in which I capture a strong emotion or moving thought:

Time without you feels like waiting until I can be with you again.

Every once in a while, I like to write complete poems of the traditional kind with a rhyme scheme and multiple stanzas. More often than that, when I feel the urge to write about a new memory added to my heart, I tend produce a very few lines in the style seen above. Nearly all of the ones I have written over the past three years are about the love, passion and tears of my relationship. No tacky love poems about how much I love my boyfriend, but words about how our love makes me feel, intense moments we shared and sometimes even about the doubts and fears I have. I do not know why some emotions make me want to write more than others, but I see just as much potential in painful moments as in happy ones. Like most poets, I feel greatly inspired by sorrow:

I fear that one day, someone else will put kisses on your lips and wipe away your memories of me.

I call you my prince so you won´t notice I´m not a princess.

I keep all my poetic texts in a document on my laptop but whenever inspiration overcomes me I write with what I have available at that second. It can either be a piece of paper, a napkin or my phone as long as I can somehow secure those words and add them to my document later. I rarely edit my poems after they are done. In a way I then can relive the moments and emotions I once wrote about or even make them an incentive for new poems. Probably none of my works would ever be good enough to be published, even after all these years of me writing. I do not mind that. It is something that gives me joy, something that fills my heart with passion, but surely nothing that I want to put out for everyone to read and make money off of.

I write because it gives me the opportunity to preserve my romantic emotions and moments in my relationship in a more intense, exceptional and everlasting way than my mind would ever be able to. Not to share those intimacies with the world but to remind myself of how powerful, vulnerable, tender and at the same time crushing love can be.

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