As I sit in my second period class being lectured by my teacher, my attention drifts to the notebook on my desk and I begin to draw. Heavy black ink soaks into the dry white paper as the ballpoint of the pen rolls across the white surface. It is funny to me that creating something on paper with a pen can make all your distractions go away, make all your bad thoughts and all your worries seem as though they're not there. A moment of freedom arises as I return to the ever-so-humble and safe home in my mind, the oh-so-familiar black ink caressing the paper, creating a story for me and for me only.
Homework sits on my desk as I stare blankly at the paper's blue lines that run from the left to the right. A fan spins in the corner of the room, creating sounds of air being thrown. I think of past events and alternative happenings. I look at my homework assignment, chapter six, page 343, as an irresistible thought runs through my mind. Now, at this point, nothing else matters: no homework deadlines, no bad feelings, no bad thoughts — only my own emotions expressed through a simple curve of a line. It's as if all the words I need to say do not need to be said anymore. Everything around me is still. It's just the pen, the paper, and me.
The ballpoint bounces around the paper, creating a design I'm either instantly in love with or instantly hating.
"Jake, how is your homework going?" my teacher asks.
I reply, "It's going great."
I will return to my drawing later so I can have the ever-so-great satisfaction of finishing that last black line so that the curve can find its ends meet.
I believe in drawing. Drawing makes me who I am. It gives me happiness on a bad day, and something to lean on when there's nothing. Drawing lets me be me.
With a Perspective, I'm Jake Newell.
Jake Newell is a freshman at Tamalpais High School in Mill Valley.