This song has been on repeat in my head and in my earbuds for well over a week now. Her voice is rich and buttery as it swells in intensity to a ringing sharpness that sends a chill down my spine. It is a reminder of what I’ll never be. If I could sing, steal a voice that isn’t mine, it would be hers, the way it rises above layer upon layer of strings and slow, steady beats to a pinnacle of meaning, of sweetness and then down again, settling into itself like a folded blanket.
But each of us has our own voice. It is unique to us, and it is unique to the ear of the listener. Our words and our tone speak to us and who we are, our intentions, our secrets, hidden or exposed. They speak to the listener and who they are, how they interpret what they hear, and how they respond to our voice with their own. A dialogue.
Our voice is one among a sea of voices, a reverberation of echoes that often beg the question : am I audible? Maybe if I say it as she said it, I would be heard. Understood.
It is this I struggle with in various capacities and contexts :
To trust the strength of my own voice.
To let it ring true or fall silent as the moment demands. To write, speak, sing with my own words, whether or not anyone is paying any heed. To temper my envy and insecurity with respect for each voice in its uniqueness and respect for a shared reality : no voice can be duplicated. Each is autonomous. Each is temporary. We are tasked with choosing words carefully while we have the opportunity to say them.
Here are a few voices from around the web that I appreciate :