The Prettiest Girl.

“Brent’s grandma hung his photographs from her walls.

Wynn’s grandma owned a pair of those tiger ears and was a Chippewa because he was a Chippewa. 

Andrew’s grandma watched him swing and miss during t-ball and was there to see him get his first hit.

Kellen’s grandma loved how much he reminded her of a young Joe.

Erika’s grandma was thankful for another girl and the cheesy grin cemented on her face.

My grandma whispered in my ear, ‘My Emmy, you’re the prettiest girl in the world.’

Today, heaven’s getting the prettiest girl there ever was.”

Writing, to me at this moment, is entirely emotional, exhausting and unending. In my family, I’m known as the writer; the one who will find the right words, evoke the right emotions, sing the right tune. I have a million answers to the prompt, “Why I Write,” but I don’t have the one answer as to how to express those answers. The swamp I am wading through consists of confusion in form, style and structure for my first essay as an official member of the Fall 2012 cohort for a Sweetland Minor in Writing.

Writing, to me at this moment, is freeing, uplifting and necessary. I know why I write, but I don’t know how to tell you. I don’t know how to go about successfully depicting my act of writing. Because it’s mine. All mine. It’s personal. It’s hard. It’s always emotional. It’s always undervalued to the naked eye. Writing, to me at this moment, needs a mode of expression. I need to find a way to tell you my story and let you inside my thoughts.

I wrote and spoke the excerpt above on behalf of Brent, Wynn, Andrew, Kellen, Erika & I two Thursdays ago. I like to think that those words helped heal our hearts. I write because words are the only things that seem enough. To us, those words told the story of a grandmother’s love.

But I don’t know how to show you that – to show you the emotion that I’m yearning for. I don’t know how to tell that I write because I have to.

4 thoughts to “The Prettiest Girl.”

  1. Emily, I think that the poem you wrote is really beautiful. I also really like the picture of your grandmother. I think that while reading your blog post, I was kind of thinking that you write to express feelings a different way. You are writing to express emotion maybe? When you said that “words are the only thing that seemed enough,” it seemed to me that you see writing as a super important medium, especially within your family. I think that in the end when you said you “write because you have to,” is enough to write a paper on. I think you can take that idea and then give examples, as you did with your grandmother, where words seemed to you, the only choice.

  2. This is such a great, responsive blog post. The language in the poem was simple yet extremely descriptive and I think you’ll have a lot of wiggle room when it comes to the question of why you write. You’re headed in a great direction, which is a much more direct line than many of us are heading. You’re already doing a great job of capturing why you write.

  3. I can definitely understand and see how you “have a million answers to the prompt…but [you] don’t have the one answer as to how to express those answers”. I agree with Madelaine in that I think you writing may be motivated from you wanting to express certain emotions. And while it is hard to find the exact words to answer this prompt, it may be helpful to include a few anecdotes in your essay. They may make it easier to express your true feelings rather than trying to capture it all in a few sentences. I am excited to read your draft. Good Luck!

    1. Thanks for all the encouragement and suggestions, friends. As Madelaine and Brandon can attest to after reading my draft, I took those anecdotal tips and SO used them! You guys are the best – thank you for your support these first few weeks of Minor in Writing life!

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