“I believe that holding a magnifying glass to the most mundane aspect of the everyday will reveal some sort of poetry, some sort of music. Scratch the surface of the street to reveal art. Strike a match and illuminate the human condition.”
- Alan Hall, Reality Radio
I’ve never been good at staying put. Growing up, my parents would lose me frequently in public settings. Often times where I wound up was pretty predictable, like the Disney Store in the mall or the cereal aisle of the grocery store, but I wandered nonetheless.
These days, my winding gait has become more of an asset than a crutch. I don’t consider my journey through young adulthood to be a straight path, but a scenic route, with many detours. Geographically, it’s hardly a journey at all—more like a glass of spilled milk that just keeps spreading and reaching across the counter. From Nashville, Tennessee to Boston, Massachusetts, and now westward, I am spending this summer in the San Francisco Bay Area, living with extended family and interning with a publisher. As a student of English and Creative Writing, I’m practically drooling with anticipation.
The more pins I drop on the map, the broader my perspective becomes. With movement and distance comes understanding—of my childhood, my family, my privilege—and potential directions for the future. Writing has been a prime vehicle of self-discovery, a way for me to reflect and dream simultaneously. But beyond the page, I have developed a love for radio as well, as a medium to combine my own writing with the stories of others. Radio is an excellent platform for expression and empowerment. And really, the blank page of writing as a whole is an open invitation to anyone, inclusive of all voices, all creatures great and small.
This summer, as I learn more about the publishing process, and how to serve others in their writing pursuits, I hope to develop a more attentive ear. I hope to listen and watch for idiosyncrasies that present nuanced angles on the familiar.
So maybe I'll never have that Wendell Berry ideal of home, of one place and role to which I will always return. But the farther I travel, the deeper I listen, the more that I write--all weave together into a strong conviction that the avenues presented by artistic expression are more than enough to induce growth.