as soon as I learned how to write with a pencil (the crayons and markers were hibernating until art class) the shavings appeared.
just a few at first, when I would misspell a word (a common thing when you go to a Montessori elementary school) and actually catch the error (a not so common thing when you go to a Montessori elementary school)
beliv became believe with a cloud of eraser shavings acting as a halo around the corrected mistake
the cloud was dispersed with a brush of a hand leaving a clean surface for the next crime to be committed
for the sake of aging teachers’ eyeballs, the pen usurped the pencil, but not the shavings. they simply transformed from halo clouds into tornadoes that touched down and interrupted the flow of the now damaged world.
it was around this time, the introduction of the pen, that we began to realize that there were worse things that misspelled words
it was around this time that our writing began to look like soldiers’ letters home, sentences blacked out. CLASSIFIED information made its way into out writing, and we were left to decide if it was ready for the public eyes or if it needed to placed into the folder marked TOP SECRET: AUTHORIZED PERSONNEL ONLY.
(no one knew that we were the only authorized personnel)
the teacher continued to age, and soon we were forced to put down the pen for the keyboard.
our chicken scratch handwriting now replaced with standardized pixels on a screen, our misspelled words now brought their squiggly red snakes out as playmates.
it was around this time that we were introduced to the delete key.
no longer were there halos surrounding the corrected mistake, or even tornadoes attempting to hide leaked information.
now there was white.
blizzards covered our mistakes so that we were the only ones who knew they once existed, and we kept building right on top of the fresh snow, adding layers and layers until even we forgot where the mistakes once existed.