The World Explained Through Fountain Pens
Nakaya Piccolo string-rolled (shiro tamenuri urushi) on a binakul jacket from Anthill Fabric Gallery. © Leigh Reyes.
I am a fountain pen and stationary addict. As a lover of fountain pens I've been a long time follower of the blog of Leigh Reyes, a fellow Nakaya addict. I get a strange solace from knowing that she has an even worse pen habit than me.
She wrote a recent post "On Craft, Appropriation, and Distance" about about her family experience of invasion, colonisation, and cultural appropriation - through the lens of fountain pens and textiles.
One of many comments that hit home for me (as a writer, and a lover of Japanese poetry and pens) was: "There are many non-Japanese who adopt Japanese practice and symbolism, tasting parts of the culture without having to choke on the messy heart."
That's very true. It's also true that many English people adopt English practices and symbolism whilst ignoring the messy heart beating in their own chest.