I write because I hear voices and I want to get them down and dialog with them while I still believe in them. Walking along the Erie Canal, in silence, in winter, the voice of the old lift bridge on Main Street groans as the cars cross it, howls as the wind whips through the struts. Walking on, it is easy to forget that independent voice of the bridge, unique, musical, sad. It is even more likely that rather than forget the voice, an assumption will creep in and lie down in my memory with the voice and whisper “it was not a voice but a sound.” I write because everything has its own voice and to deny those voices is criminal.
What stands in my way? The din of mind chatter, the clock, the calendar, the “to do” list, the mind dulled by nine-to-five. Each day born and each day dead without my noticing its passing. What stands in my way is the gray noise that obscures my ability to hear and pay attention to those voices that surround me.
Until I dialog with each new found voice, for instance, the trees above the pond down on Wesley Hill on the last day of October, until I respond, write of them, write to them, then they remain for me, at best unknown and at worst unreal. I write to investigate, to envision, to witness, to dialog, to chat, to add my voice to those that call out to me from just over my shoulder. I write in order to call back.