ec1339c108aec57a17d0843fc18b3414This is a poem I wrote as an assignment for the worship team that I am a part of at church. 

Newsprint brought my parents together
Defining my father still
down to his illegible note taking in the margins

Millions of pages in
thousands of books
hundreds of magazines
countless clippings
crowd each other all over their house
competing for attention

Voracious does not begin to describe
our collective appetite for words
or better yet

My parents save all of our words
published and unpublished
hastily scribbled and neatly printed
Our words are savored
papers and postcards
tucked away in files
stuffed in drawers
piled on desks

I typed my first newsletter
on my mom’s green typewriter
when I was eight
And I’ve never stopped

So much of the paper now is
stacked up inside digital devices
But it’s still paper
to me
extracting or repelling
juggling or reshaping my words

Words swim inside the paper
until they need to
come to the surface to breathe
They float or they sink
They crawl around the edges
clinging to what meaning they can find

I am less attached
to the paper than
my parents are
I can harvest the words and
give away the paper


Or heretically just throw it away, or recycle it


The words remain
The words are imprinted on me
I was born of paper, and now the paper is me


Betsy Rosenblatt Rosso
March 2016