A story I’ve told many times, but never written
Starts with me writing the letter K. I write it with blue ink.
It only stands for a nickname,
but it’s a glimpse of the transformation I long for.
A woven pen, with blue ink.
Simple and absolutely priceless.
From a dark corner of an infamous and forgotten prison
‘K’ spends the time of “his time” making crafts for sale.
And he wove it for me. Included my name on the weave.
Yes. My name with green thread.
They say that ink is a writer’s second blood.
And while I see the blue ink drying on the paper,
I can’t help think of the blood that covered the alleys
of his neighborhood, as I walked there so many times,
the same hands that shed so much blood,
have gifted me with one of my most valuable treasures.
A symbol that captures not only my heart for writing
but also a tool to give voice to the untold stories
that remain in the silence of those hard places.
This pen that is a constant reminder of why I do what I do.
Humbly, I hold it in my hands,
challenged by the privilege of seeing beyond.
Liz Herrera loves to learn, read, have a good cup of coffee and find creative ways to combine her passions: communications, urban ministries, social action and mixed media. Liz is a journalist and has served alongside the team of CTM Guatemala since 2006 and worked for over 12 years among marginalized populations with churches and non-profit organizations. This poem was first published on her blog on November 20 2012.