I love punk rock. I always have. The Sex Pistols, The Clash, Patti Smith, The Saints; their music really hit me. I loved the attitude, the guts of their sound and the way it was so raw and grungy. No one ever knew that. I didn’t tell anyone or say anything about the music. I’ve always been a quiet, shy person and talking about myself has never come easily to me. Back then it was even more difficult. Punk wasn’t the done thing. We’d see the pointed heads and safety pins from the safety of our TV news and I could hear all the tsk, tsking going on from the adults around me. Punk was alien and obviously therefore WRONG.
It’s not that I wanted pointy hair or safety pins sticking out of me. I just admired their ‘gonna say it and do it whether you like it or not’ attitude which fought its way out of every song. I like that they had an opinion on life and were prepared to defend it. They expressed themselves in their own unique way and let nothing stop them.
I was one of them at heart but I was the silent punk. I was the one who felt it but couldn’t say it. I was the one who put it all into my songs and stories and then hid them away from the light. I was a silent punk.
Then I grew up and let my inner punk shrivel away. You do the work thing and the famiily thing. You tread the accepted paths. You conform. Life toddles on.
One day I met a couple of people who were doing things their way and ruffling a lot of feathers at the same time. They were causing upsets all over the place. I liked that that they really knew who they were. Whether you agreed with the way they worked or not, they were true to themselves. They bought a bit of punk back to the world. They bought back attitude.
From somewhere deep inside me, a frail and limp punk suddenly began her comeback. Yep, she was still there. This time I let her out. I let her breathe and grow. I wanted to see what she could do.
I changed. In fact, lots of things changed. A new light has gone on inside me and it shows in the way I work and the way I write. I write what I want and how I want. It feels good at last. My true self is mixing with my business self and it works. If you’ve been following this blog, you’ve probably noticed the change. I’m allowing my love of words and writing to show.
Now I encourage others to let their real voices out as they write. I want them to know the freedom and excitement that writing in your own true voice can bring. I encourage them to be authentic and to love it. I hope they’ll find their own bit of punk inside and celebrate it. If you write, write for yourself. Your audience will get the message much more clearly.
Oh, I still hear the tsk tsking but this time it’s about me and it comes from some of the most unexpected places. I’m a mum of teenagers, for heaven’s sake. I shouldn’t be thinking about punk or metal or about music at all. But who cares? It’s me and that’s just the way I am. I punk in a quiet voice but I punk nevertheless.