Each month at Yellow, we explore and immerse ourselves into one focus - creating conversations between each other and within ourselves centered around topics that hold a lot of influence in our lives. As we begin to reflect and explore our new topic this month, we invite you into a moment to introduce our focus on Voice. Join us in this meditation below to pause, reflect, and see what is unearthed in you.
To the storytellers,
Do you know how you move us
even in your stillness?
That your words are the willow
we rest our heads under -
Cool earth in our hands
eyes gazing, mesmerized
at the rhythm of your whispers
sweetly swaying in the breeze
Regal deep breath magic grace and welcome
To the dreamers with dried paint
forever peeling from under their fingernails
Those that speak oceans
Freeze motion rage and romance in a moment -
Ones who abandon warm beds
wheel into the night at epiphany’s first call
Caffeinated by the craving
for the right hue’s resolve
Wildfire constellation and neon symphony
To the poets who use flavor as their syllables
Expert linguists in our universal language
Architects of making time travel possible
around any four-legged surface -
You whisk us to lands we’ve yet to devour
and deep rooted memories in one breath
Warm notes of curry, impulsive lime zest,
ease of mint all in your wheelhouse
Nurture spunk grit wisdom and surprise
To the composers that melt and mold us
Rebuild our hearts and weaken our knees
Ones who gift us vocabulary
for the grandest canyons we ache to express -
Know by name the strings heartache sounds like
how to turn wind into wistfulness
and horns - soaring arms spread wide
As much the lifeblood as the gold leaf to our world
Sweat revel swoon and illumination
To you, storytellers,
Lions on the front lines
Unsung aces behind the curtain -
Before and behind us
among and within us
The voice in your veins exhales life -
expands our capacity to breathe it in
Marvel mystery granite and humanity
There are voices we’d name with our eyes closed, past and present, that have shaped so many areas of our society. The Brenés, the Oprahs, the Malalas; the Georgias, the Fridas, the Annies; the Mayas and the Marys; the Dianas, Ellas, and Stevies. These women have all used their unique way of adding to and speaking about the world around us; the impact of which we all know has been monumental.
From poets to philanthropists, artists to activists, singers to chefs - any genuine, poignant expression of emotion or opinion is undeniably eye-catching.
Far from this pack of influential women as we may feel, the truth is, all of us have a voice. We all have a story, a background, a passion that we burn for; and none of ours sound quite the same. Even if never lifted on a stage, nor hung in a museum, we’re still capable of immense impact.
So, what holds us back from owning our voice, and makes falling into the arms of the herd’s sweet embrace much more enticing? Granted, in some ways it’s inevitable for us to be continually hopping onto similar trains, even in the most minute ways. From what I can tell, you’d be hard pressed to find someone right now who doesn’t love a good fiddle leaf fig in the corner, or enjoy that shade of pale pink that seems to be on everyone and everything. But at what point does appreciating a trend, whether materialistic or far greater, evolve into the re-molding of ourselves just to fit it? How long does it take for the childlike carefreeness toward the gap in our teeth, crack in our laugh, quirk in our humor, or asymmetry in our eyes fade away in the face of desiring “normality?”
Can we bravely choose to be curious enough about what could happen when we not just embrace, but articulate our distinct character?
Because when people speak up in their fullest potential, it does something to the rest of us. It’s the very reason we flock to museums, shed tears at vulnerable speeches, and find freedom rolling down the freeway, shouting along to another’s lyrics. The richness that comes from being alive and in love in your own skin goes beyond you; it illuminates a road map for the rest of us. It touches our spirit. It gives us a star to point to in the sky and say, “THAT. That’s what this feels like.” Your particular expression of thrill, loss, joy, fear, and love can speak loudly to our core, yet come in a form we could never reiterate.
This life is filled with so much bittersweet mystery. And is there anything more gratifying, more soul swelling, than finding something for our fingers to grab onto that defines our human experience? So let’s expand our dreaming of what we can give our version of words to. Whether that means delivering a message to the masses, or perhaps passing your metaphorical microphone onto someone else. Even gratitude by the recognition of every simple, meaningful moment of life serves to shift perspective. Capture the sentiment in familiar handwriting, the scent of grinding coffee filling the air, the smile consuming a child’s face. Give light to the abundance of significance around us. Affirm the beauty that all of it - all of us - matter.
Photos by Natalie Crane