On Starting

(Photographer unknown)

He said, “I’ve been praying for you to find your voice.”

He doesn’t know how I am threatened by the quiet, by the space that shows up each morning waiting for me to honor it.

You have to trust the lump in your throat, the tightness in your rib cage, the hand in your stomach closing up slow into a fist. This is your body speaking in native tongue.

You have to learn the dialect of your body’s native tongue.

Write the thing whose familiarity displaces you with discomfort.

Write the thing you would want to sign anonymous.

Write the thing that makes you scared to begin, the thing that makes you think warily, “what’s going to happen when I start?”

Just start.


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