Words

by Beth Stewart


I’ve always been obsessed with words. As a child, creative writing was my first artistic endeavor. As an adolescent, I wrote song lyrics from my favorite bands – The Beatles, Nirvana, and Dave Matthews Band – on large canvases and hung them all over my room. Now, I have a framed Goethe quote hanging in my flat, right next to the piano. Words are my means of self-expression, inspiration, and Feng Shui.

The sound of a word is an aural feast in itself, like my favorite Italian verb coccolare (“to cuddle”). Doesn’t it just sound like two lovers nuzzling into each other? Words are personal. They carry stories that are unique to each of us, through our individual and cultural contexts. Certain words smack us awake while others paint subtle shades. They possess weight and energy, like matter. They are mystical and ethereal. To me, they are life force.

A couple of years back, I combined my love of words, travel, and healthy living into a blog called The Artisan Traveler. My aim was to provide useful information to balance-seeking travelers like myself. While I loved the creative side of blogging, I underestimated the time commitment required for thorough and accurate research. The truth is, I’m a health and wellness enthusiast, not an expert! With a heavy heart, I shut down the blog, but I still feel the itch to write. This writing page will serve as the new home for several Artisan Traveler excerpts, as well as some new content related to my real area of expertise: opera singing, performing, training, and the artist’s life.

What do performers and writers have in common? We create and communicate. We tell stories that transcend race, religion, and socio-economic background. When spoken, sung, or written in truth, words illuminate our common humanity. This is the crux of my obsession: connection, the reminder that we are all more alike than we are different, and that we’re never truly alone.