From the Author
Iremember lying upstairs in the old farmhouse, snuggled down in a feather bed,buried beneath layers of homemade quilts. Fully awake, I would listen tomy mother, father, grandmother, grandfather, aunts and uncles talking, theirvoices drifting up to me through the heat vent in the floor. I enjoyedthe music of their speech, the meter: the up and down patterns and the variousinflections and tones of each individual.
Manyof the patterns were the same. They were from the same family, afterall. But some had moved away, as my mother had, to the "big city" and herspeech had changed - evolved. I found this fascinating!
Mawmawsays "Well, I'll red up the table then." Her voice is deep in her throat,resonant and rich. Mom answers "Okay, Mother. I'll help youclean up," this said much lighter and higher in the throat. AuntLouise replies "Fetch them dishes on over here then, Mam-maw."
LikeMawmaw, she speaks deep within the larynx, emitting the same sonoroussound. Beautiful! Exhilarating! It was difficult todrift off in spite of the caressing feathers and quilts.
Who could sleepwith this verbal lullaby just one floor below?With this wealth of dialectand poetry surrounding me throughout my childhood, it was no wonder I became awriter. What else could I do but scribe the music of my family'svoice?