“The pen is mightier than the sword” is an adage coined by Edward Bulwer-Lytton in 1839. A pen or pencil is a valuable tool – and so is a notebook. For years I have had a ‘wossige’ book. My wossige book is a hard-backed notebook, usually un-ruled, for writing things down in, taking bark and leaf rubbings, doing drawings in and even for chopping vegetables on when camping. I use it for writing poems, doing sketches, writing lists, remembering ideas and for processing feelings by emptying my whirling brain onto paper (something like a paper version of the ‘pensieve’ used by Professor Dumbledore in Harry Potter).
Not everybody likes to use pen and paper, but when any writing or drawing is treated light heartedly, with no pressure on how people want to express themselves, using a note book, or even making our own books from scrap paper and card, (like the ones made by Creeping Toad and participants of one of his workshops, below), can be a lot of fun and results in a group of very proud people.
In the Coyotes' Guide to Nature Connection journalling is considered a core routine, and is a way to hone observations, make maps, let the mind wander and doodle, and write poems for example. I usually go camping with one in my bag somewhere. I make sure it is a hardback one. Then I can use it as a chopping board too!
What follows is a simple poem writing and coming to our senses activity, something you could do over and over in different places, and fill a journal with pictures made of words.