I pose to you the following question,
“How do you write the voices of your past?“
How do you quote friends that you have parted with in time, or members of family no longer alive? How do you give them new life?
As I begin to weave together a story that is as much mine as it is those who surrounded me I am faced with this challenge. A simple opening scene; friends talking with one another on a car ride, now becomes complicated in the obscurity of dialogue.
What did he say to me?
What was his tone?
Did we laugh in response, happy and carefree, never for a moment thinking to mark the words as important, nor thinking that one day they would be surrounded in the obscurity of time?
A single moment is all that remains to me, and if I were a painter I know what colors I would place onto the canvas, the glow of sunshine through the shade of blurring trees as we drove by. The brightness that shined on all our faces. But alas, I am not a painter. I am a writer. And the ink on the end of my brush colors in one tone. For no matter how I may strain to recall that fond moment of memory, I am unable to hear what my friends said to me.
Yet the obsession remains. A tireless drive to lift the heavy veil of mystery from something lost to me. So I brutalize the moment, like a mad doctor giving life to a monster. Their words utter fiction directed now in unison to serve the larger story.
Reading the scene now flows with a steady beat.
It is alive! The stitching though, haphazard and at times grotesque.
The stitching though, haphazard and at times grotesque.
For how can it not be? I have set out to do the impossible; to relive a moment of the past, hoping with all my strength that I could remember the words of those I lost.
This scene that I mention in this post is part a huge project that I have begun to undertake, that will try to navigate my past experience of going through college. I am very excited to share more of it with you in the weeks to come! In the mean time, if any one has advice on “how to breathe life” in their characters voices, I am all ears. Thank you!