Sunday, August 26, 2012

Open Mic

A little under a year ago I lost my voice.  It was a gradual goodbye happening on the back of a lingering cold until one morning I woke up and it had gone completely, not even leaving me with a whisper.   This had never happened to me before and it was a most surreal experience.    Among the feelings it brought with it, mild panic included, I was quite surprised to find that I also felt a kind of excitement too.     How, I thought, was I going to make myself heard and understood?    How would everyday life be when I can’t speak a single word?  I began to fantasise about carrying a pad and pencil on some string around my neck, sessions of charades and lots of pointing at things but really I did wonder how this was going to work?   I liked the idea of finding out.   
I’m thinking now that it’s been a long time since I expressed my voice here on this blog.   I hope I still have some readers left!   (New ones always welcome).    I’m happy to be here doing it although it does feel strangely unfamiliar to turn my thinking voice into a writing one again.   It has been a long time.     
The voice we have manifests itself to the world in so many ways.   We think with a particular voice, we speak with a different voice, we write using many voices and we sing with the most unique voice of all so unalike to everyone else’s.   With all these voices inside of us we call the world to listen, to come closer and hear it properly, to be a part of us and allow us to be a part of the world and of each other.   Our voices create attachments and a sort of fusion is established whereby things are brought closer together through melody and sound, a vast space between things (and sometimes between people) is immediately and instantly bridged.   Intimacies are established, friendships strengthened, love is built as a result in part to the human voice and how we use it.    It is an instrument we’ve naturally learnt to play so well.   Note how we instinctively hush down our words in a quiet room or the way we clothe our voice with tenderness and love when speaking to a sad friend.    We say what we say with such nuances and intricacies intact that the voice alone can convey who we are and what is in our hearts.   It is a unique human trait unequalled in the world of being.
We so often hear about and experience for ourselves that common feeling of being touched by someone’s words, being moved to tears on account of what their voice has said.    Where is it I wonder that is touched within us or perhaps outside of us...?    Where is this spot that the voice presses and we are so affected by it, this irreversible connection that remains with us and we are unable and unwilling to forget it.   The human voice can touch parts of us that are out of reach most of the time, that with the right tone at the right time with the right words and sounds it can act like a magnetic force stretching over and pulling something out of us that we keep inside. 
I’ve heard many beautiful voices recently and I’ve witnessed what happens when these voices are expressed in song amongst a silent crowd, a crowd who are listening intently.    Like a parliament of owls they sit very still yet they are moved and stirring, something within them is dancing and joyous.   The singing voice introduces to the world a very different aspect of our being, a part of us that we don’t always see or are aware of but it is there and it makes itself well known when it's been brought to light, or to sound I should say.   I feel it is the soul that is touched and in turn the soul that is singing.   The singer and the audience become involved with each other in a close dynamic that unites them both and a spiritual connection is somewhere formed.   Some voices, whether spoken or sung, just seem to speak to us more than others.    They speak directly to our heart and our heart responds and replies right back.   We may later forget what we've heard but it’s doubtful that we’ll forget how it made us feel, a voice we love will always stay with us, and we never forget it.       

My voice did eventually come back after a few days, it was a welcome relief.    I found though that I was quieter than usual that I'd gotten used to my own silent communication not to mention becoming quite good at charades at this point.    I became more aware of my voice, how I used it and what I said.   I felt like conserving it for only the important things in case it run out again.   And I noticed that after a long silence a spoken voice is particularly listened to (hope that goes for blogs as well...)