I’m a writer and artist, living on the borderlands between Yorkshire and Lancashire in the North of England. I am haunted. I hear their voices every time I open a book. They are all around me. I am told of the people who have been here before: relatives, friends… both recent and in the long distant past. Why no-one else hears their voices confuses me. To the people around me it seems they are lost. Everyone needs some kind of connection, to feel there is a meaning to their existence, and yet… It was as a child that the voices first became clear. As I’ve grown older, I’vehad to struggle to fight the urge to acquiesce to the quiet life, to keep myself from turning books into mere words on a page. It is when I write my poetry, or play my music, or paint, or watch the flocks of wading birds forming shapes in the sky over a moor, that I feel the ridiculous facade of adulthood fall. There, behind that irrational rationalism deemed normal life, there is my meaning. I can relax and enjoy a fuller life there. That ghost world is not an escape: it is reality. If I listen closely I can pick out their voices. They aren’t from another world – theirs is not the “afterlife”, nor is it “elsewhere”. They are here. They have never left. The myths are real. The stories are real. Ghosts are real. They rarely shout. They rarely scream. My life is about learning how to listen properly to their words.