Friday, November 25, 2005

it's been a long, lovely week off work. spent most of my time with family, reading a little and making notes for poems in my notebook. thanksgiving dinner was a triumph, tho we didn't get as many photos of nicholas i would have liked, eating his first thanksgiving feast.

next month nicholas will celebrate his 1st year. anna sent out invitations a couple of days ago, with our phone number listed so people could rsvp. i asked why she didn't include our email address. cuz no one responds via email, she told me.

guess so, given the omnipresence of cell phones. there are devices for yr hand, contraptions to hook up to yr ear. what next, a chip implanted directly into yr grey matter? wherever you go, whether the grocery store, book shop, video outlet, poetry reading, or just walking on the street, people can't help but be yapping away on these marvels.

don't get me wrong. i ain't no neo-luddite. but i'd rather use email, than the phone. esp. when i'm away from the house i don't want to talk on the phone. anna and i might be the last hold-outs in our not having a cell phone. i'd rather write letters to my amigos. i consider email a correspondence, it is letter-writing, and i love writing them. i've slowed down because of the usual time-constraints most of us have. it would seem that the art of letter-writing has not died away, tho there are many who would rather use their cell phones.

i recall a lecture from the authors of a jackson pollock bio published i think in the late '80s. they explained that the gathering of documents, such as letters written by pollock, was a bit of a problem since he didn't write many letters, in fact he didn't speak much, that most of the info had to come by word-of-mouth from friends, family and acquaintances. there wasn't much of a written record by pollock, and that scholars in the near-future would encounter this same problem since most do not write letters, or other written things, such as notebook entries.

i don't know if that is quite true today. the internet is still mostly text. there are a number of excellent journals published strictly online, there are listservs, and there is email. i've no idea how other writers treat their inboxes, but i think of mine as a treasure-trove of letters. i don' t delete them, but save them, as i would a letter received via snail mail.

this is no way some sort of writerly utopia, by any means. but i can't help but think of the new technologies being a boon to me as a poet. maybe it just that i can't stand cell phones, how people with no one in sight talk into air when they are shopping for noodles at the grocery store. that is kind of spooky.


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