Hooray for VOICE! I am on a journey to discover all of my voices, especially the child one, as I am surrounded by children’s voices each day. I am familiar with my voices….but have not ever sat down and listed, or sorted them in an orderly way. I am alwuz, every day searching for meaning and something worthy of speech and writing. You wouldn’t know it from my posts, most of the time. I am either religious, motherly, or ridiculous. Sometimes I am hard on myself…on my voice (s). Fall silent in the end from over use. Wish I had an audio enhancement system for my throat chakra that allows for only the “best” to come through. In sizing up, I sometimes swing to judgemental. You wouldn’t know it based on conventions, mechanics…..but I am a tough self critic, especially when in a more moral, religious mood. When I’m not……watch out! I think it would be best to embrace the truth in all my voices…..or, should I say…..inflections….ha ha. No, I’m not schizophrenic. I’m a writer.
On my way home from work one night in the ’90s, I heard actress Judith Ivey on Selected Shorts, reading “Personal Testimony,” a short story by Lynna Williams.
The narrator is eleven-year-old Ellen Whitmore, a preacher’s daughter from Fort Worth, who is at Southern Baptist summer camp in Oklahoma. At evening services, when campers are expected to witness to their experiences of sin and repentance, Ellen demonstrates a talent that catches the attention of fifteen-year-old Michael. Although he’s reputed to be most spiritual boy in camp, Michael has what Ellen’s brother calls “Jesus Jaw”– he has plenty to say but can’t complete a simple sentence: “I just–I mean, it’s just so–I just . . .” He tells Ellen he wishes he could speak about his spiritual life as easily as she can speak about hers, so, following her mother’s example, she offers to help…
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