The Red Crayon

Dreams are so weird. Well, mine are to me. If I told you about them you would probably find them really boring, so I will spare you that. I did have one last night where it was a dream inside a dream. Those are rare. In my dream I was telling two people about what we were doing in a dream, and yes, their eyes were glazing over as I spoke… in my dream!

Although most dreams are strange and hardly seem worth remembering when the alarm goes off in the morning, some dreams seem to demand our attention. Those dreams feel more lucid and not like a dream at all. There’s something different about the light, the feel, the sounds and the overall intensity of them. Have you had one of these lately? Do you know what I’m talking about?


Mine was simple and non-threatening. It was a red crayon. It was just lying there waiting for me to pick it up. I remember exactly what it looked like.  It was one of those big chunky crayons, made for little hands. It was new and perfect in shape and form. The tip was an unpressed cone of wax, still shiny from the processing plant. The paper sleeve on the crayon was free of wear and tear. I could tell it had not been handled much, if at all. It was as if this crayon had been perfectly preserved from childhood. My childhood. It was being saved for now. Saved for me to take and use in my 48th year of life. Perhaps in the past I have used other colors. Maybe those have already been worn down past the paper wrapper, but not the red. I’ve never used the red. Why? Is it too bold? Is it too everything I have never felt qualified to do until now?

When I woke up, I couldn’t shake the image. It was just lying there, quietly suggesting that I ponder its meaning a little further. So I did.

red crayonSM

Suddenly it all started to make sense to me. The crayon can be used for drawing pictures, coloring, and also for writing. It’s one of the first tools of expression we’re given as a child. It’s hard to cause harm to yourself or others with a crayon. There’s just something trustworthy about it. They don’t have dangerous lead in them like a pencil, only wax and a little pigment. Even the paper wrapper is there for your protection, keeping wax from causing friction on the skin.

They say red is the first color a baby sees beyond black and white and all the shades of gray. What does it feel like to see red for the first time? It’s special. It’s your first taste of the rainbow. What joy is triggered deep within when you notice that first red thing? Was it a ball? A spinning top? A brightly dressed doll or teddy bear? Try to remember. It must have been a memorable moment.

I think mine was a big red crayon. Even before I could speak, read, write or draw, there it was, presented to me like the greatest gift in life. A call to create – to color my world with something outside of the fields of gray. A beckoning to discover passion within myself. To bring to the world my unique perspective of expression that no one else has authority to deliver.

What are you being called to create outside the fields of gray?

May you take your red crayon by the hand and express your creative power with courage.

Love always,


Bonnie Kelso writes and illustrates children’s books that celebrate diversity, creativity, and all the special qualities that make each of us unique. Her book EVER OPEN is now available on Amazon in print and for kindle.



Deep in the heart of the Everglades, 26 tiny eggs are beginning to hatch in a giant nest under a tall cypress tree. The fourth alligator to see the light of day is about to embark on a classic hero’s journey. Join Baby D as he explores his world through the innocence and wonder of a natural dreamer. Discover what makes him special while pondering what it might be that makes you special, too.

One thought on “The Red Crayon

Leave a Reply to Dean Perry Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s