Arts & Culture

Writing With Ink: A Poem by Carol Good

Ink bottle fountain pen
Written by Carol Good

Writing With Ink

Grade 5, with her first-ever male teacher,
Mr. Boast
included lessons in penmanship

After so many years of
soft covered exercise books
with wide spaced blue and pink lines

And countless fat soft lead pencils
where she learned to carefully print
each letter of the alphabet – tall and small

Now she would learn cursive –
how to scribe tops and tails
to create whole flowing words

With each lesson,
Mr. Boast patrolled
adjusted angles and elbows

He was both judge and jury
It was his decision when to bestow
the coveted straight pen

And the bottle
of dark blue ink –
no ballpoints allowed

She envied those
gracefully scribing
while she scratched

Finally when she got her chance
to cross the inky threshold
the new mechanics took all her attention

It was not
as glamourous
as she imagined

When most of the class
had graduated to writing with ink
Mr. Boast offered another alternative

Personal fountain pens
were now allowed
her heart lifted

Somehow she persuaded her mother
that she too needed
her own magic wand

About Carol Good

Since retiring, Carol has redirected her creativity into writing – mostly poetry. Her pandemic projects have included publishing of her first poetry collection – Alive & 65: a celebration for her 65th birthday and joining the League of Canadian Poets. She lives in an octagonal century home with her very handy husband located on the Treaty Lands and Territory of the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation. She recognizes the land as being home and traditional territory to other Indigenous people since time immemorial.


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About the author

Carol Good

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1 Comment

  • Lovely poem — even at a young age this scribe clearly understood the power and beauty of words as conveyed through that final metaphor of fountain pen as magic wand. Enjoyed this immensely!