Tuesday, January 11, 2011

To Hear Yourself Talk

To Hear Yourself Talk

Do you like to hear yourself talk.
Have you tried to catch the tail ends
of words whipping back at you,
the thin string of a balloon pulling free
from your hand as it swims up and away.
Can you hear your voice as you activate it.
Wrestle your brain away from your mouth
and find the final phonemes as they dissolve
into silence. Cradle the sounds between
your ear and your neck, allow them to unfurl
and fade: an r-colored vowel, slurred,
the dull blade of the /d/ dropped.
Who doesn’t like to hear their own machinery,
these words suggesting themselves.


  1. when I listen to a recording of my voice - which is surreal and bizarre... is the only time I can hear my accent - I sound funny hehe


  2. I like how you've taken that first line (who among us hasn't thought it or used it?) and spun it out.

    I still think it's amazing that we can share our voices over a cable.

  3. You have really been on a roll lately (if not always). This raises so many "talking points" if you will--how you say things as opposed to what you say, among others. If we could only hit the "preview" button, before engaging, if only to ensure the brain-mouth software connection is sufficiently quick. These days, I only really hear myself when I am alone, talking to myself, an affliction that starts to peak in your 50s.
    Another beautiful job, brilliant niece!!!

  4. from Therese L. Broderick -- Of course I had to read this poem out loud to myself -- to hear the poem in my own voice! The sounds "swim" in my mouth and ear. I especially like the cradling between ear and neck -- a striking image which reminds me of "cradling" an old-fashioned phone with a cord (remember those?). I also like that the questions have no question mark. Rhetorical questions which have only one answer: YES. Hannah, this poem would be perfect for the Whale Sound audio recordings!

  5. I talk to myself to practice talks but once I heard myself on a tape and went ...eeek...I had to quickly buy the tape "The Sound of Your Voice"....I must go relisten! xoxo

  6. From now on will think of those balloons swimming up and away when I listen to people talking.

  7. What an imagination you have, Hannah!


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