Back when I let my shoulders sunburn until they peeled, when I was a summer runaway and the winter was a waiting game, payphones were still a place to wait for phone calls from civilization. I spent a good deal of time between 1999 and 2006 in a tiny, ramshackle phone booth with a sinking wooden plank floor and graffiti from 40+ years of people running away and to the same things as me.
During the coldest winter nights, I would bundle up in my navy blue room with down blanket as jacket, and I would dial the number for that payphone and just let it ring. I'd close my eyes and imagine the yellow light in the shack warming the ground around it, and the ring echoing, bouncing off of the frozen ground. I would let it ring until my heart was wrung out.
I felt a little like that phone booth last night, when I turned out every light in the whole building and only left my studio light on. For a moment I shut my eyes and I listened to everything ring, and felt the ground begin to thaw beneath my feet.