I have a gift for my readers this week. All those who have followed my writing endeavours over the years gone by.
It is a very important gift - easily given - but how you use it is down to you. It is a gift that has endured mankind for thousands of year. Indeed, since before the birth of Christ.
I give to you a piece of paper on which you will find my pen. Within the pen there is ink and if you move the pen the ink will flow to the shapes that you make upon the paper. The gift is called writing.
You see, people like the Sumerians who came from Sumer in Mesopotamia (modern day Iraq) are one of the first known civilisations to use a form of writing to communicate with others. About thirty thousand years BC, the Sumerians used what we now know as the Cuneiform script. This script was a series of pictures drawn by the writer to convey a message to the reader. The script of pictures, or pictography, was written on a clay tablet with the use of a reed. Readers who got lost in cyberspace and mistakenly downloaded ‘The Legacy of the Ninth’ by Paul Anthony from the Kindle store will be familiar with part of that story when a British Intelligence Agent receives messages from his spy living with a band of terrorists in the desert wastes. The secret message is written in Cuneiform on a clay amphora.
Over the centuries mankind evolved and developed the Cuneiform early writing expression into various scripts. Cuneiform eventually became extinct and was replaced by a series of alphabets and languages that we now accept as the present day norm.
So how important is my pen and what relevance is the Cuneiform to you now?
Give a child a pen for the first time and the child will not write. The child will make a scrawl across the paper and in time will make a shape that a parent will encourage until it becomes a letter. When it is a letter, it will grow to a word in a sentence and a paragraph. The child will one day write a story from that scrawl.
Is writing important?
In 1215, at Runnymede, England the Magna Carta was written and signed and required King John of England to proclaim certain liberties to his people. For example, there was an acceptance that no man could be punished except through the law of the land. Magna Carta was the first document to limit the power of an English monarch and although much of it has been repealed over the years, its ethos is enshrined in English law today. The feudal barons of England wrote the Magna Carta almost eight hundred years ago.
Writing? Yes, writing can endure and is important.
And I’ll let you into a little secret. My ancestors are American and I trace them back many generations to Yankton, South Dakota. American readers will know of the Constitution of the United States. It is the supreme law of the United States of America. It was adopted in 1787 and although it has been reformed many times, the Constitution still underpins the legal, political and democratic processes of the United States of America. My ancestors sat on the committee in Yankton all those years ago and appointed their man to represent them in what became the political institutions of America.
Indeed, both the Magna Carta and the Constitution are written documents.
My gift to you is Paul Anthony’s Pen. Use it well for the words that are written by a pen can be enshrined in history long after the writer has moved on to another life.