My pen was made from a husk of maize, a present at la Fête – SNCF, chemins de fer, their stand spilling a light on lines that weave extremities of land.
And when I write I think of engineers, of guards in grey caps striding the carriage clipping tickets, of station clerks dependable as timetables.
I think of wasting nothing from the harvest, reaping it all in and inventing uses for the chaff ingenious as gold.
I think of writing with a flourish – not the weighty curl of letters but a fervid scrawl, my orange plastic pen steeped in a day’s sweat, decorous as truth.
Note: La Fête de L’Humanité is an annual cultural festival in Paris run by the French Communist newspaper L’Humanité, which takes place in September each year and attracts upward of half-a-million people.
Pete Godfrey works as a journalist and lives in the Hebrides.