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Noticing by Jo Riggall

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Long listed for the WRITE ABOUT WALKING AND LISTENING competition run in July & August 2021

WALKING + LISTENING

We’re ghosts aren’t we. Not really here. Caught between worlds that we distil in our minds, muffled by the headphones we wear. What’re you listening to? The morning news in clipped, serious voices, or a song, sound-tracking your morning commute?

Let’s talk about that commute. Imagine your life spread out on a map, GPS logging your movements to translate them into digital lines. Those lines connecting two points, back and forth back and forth into a culmination of linear travel over the years, with few deviations into the edge lands.

Maybe there’s another way. A different path that we could take. One which meanders and stumbles and takes you to secret clearings in the woods. Let your curiosity wander around the corner and lead you into the long grass.

There’s adventures to be had if only you listen out for its whispers on the wind. Not only with your ears. Listening is sensing the change in temperature on your skin before a summer storm. The trickle of saliva at the smell of 11pm chip shop grease. It’s overhearing someone the phone say they’re ‘sorry for your loss’, or asking ‘what’s for dinner. Spider webs catching the light. A still smoking cigarette. A fox’s scream.

Walking and listening is about noticing with your whole being. So allow your thoughts to race and run wild in the landscapes in your mind.


Itching to write something yourself? Submit a piece to our Shorelines project, and invite your friends to read it aloud, for a chance to win a prize. Join one of our creative writing workshops or keep up to date with all our competitions by signing up to our curated newsletter here.

Read more from the Long List of stories submitted to the WRITE ABOUT WALKING & LISTENING competition. Listen to winning authors read their work at a showcase event on Sunday 26 September 2021 book here.

Buy WALKING – the limited edition illustrated chapbook anthology of 15 poems and stories inspired by walking and listening €4.50 + p&p

All proceeds go to support future Sound Walk Septembers

Jriggall

Jriggall

United Kingdom

I'm a perennial dabbler, whose current interests include spoon-carving, photography and plant identification. Civil Servant by day. Can't resist a public footpath sign.

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