Thursday, July 19, 2012

the pleasure of the pixels

i'm amazed and astonished at the lightning pace of radical changes technology is having on our lives.  all our lives.  every portion, from work, to love, to entertainment, to you-name-it. 

we are all becoming pixalated.  everything has its dark side, yes, but if you are the kind of diy poet who'd rather make a few books and send them along to friends and whomever you think might give your work a read then our rapidly techno-changes is a great boon.  you can make a create a chapbook and mail it out on the cheap.  you can use or some other print-on-demand services.  you can post your work on a blog.  or you can email a pdf instead of mailing it.

kinda like the electronic chapbook i read last night by william keckler.  i dig that dude's work and was delighted to find a chap of his poems online complete with instructions on how to print it out, fold and staple it, if you're inclined.  that made me happy, keckler's poems and how readily available his chap was just from a quick google search.

these thoughts come bidden reading an essay by wendy lesser published in her collection titled the amateur: an independent life of letters [vintage; 1999].  lesser praises email and calls her essay about her ability to be a late 20th century, early 21st century 'eighteenth century man of letters' as a letter-writer 'the conversion'.  lesser's conversion mirrored my own in the late '90s as i resisted email and the internet until my mother-in-law got a computer in 1997 so she could e-mail her sister in stockholm.  the moment i logged on i was hooked.

later i discovered like-minded and similarly minded poets thru blogs and e-zines who were doing the sorts of work that energized my own life and writing.  some of these writers have become great friends.  the internet also provides forums for publishing that at least in the early days of the internet felt like a revolution.

of course there are dark sides to all this.  there always are.  i won't list them here.  however, reading wendy lesser made me re-think my own relationship to the pixels.  i've been publishing this blog for eight years now.  i like the freedom the blog gives me.  i don't have a facebook account because i consider that social media site to be rather restricting and is mostly an electronic hang-out.  okay, i guess.  however, i like the expansiveness of the blog format where i can post pics, movie reviews, rant about shit, publish poems, publish essays and whatever i can think of.  and like lesser i took think of email as correspondence.  i don't title my emails because letters were not titled.  i know that not putting titles on my missives is considered bad form.  i got over it.  you should too.  if you see my name in your inbox without a title you will know that that email is not spam but from me.  i'm thinking also of not putting titles on some of my posts too because many of the poems i write are untitled and sometimes a mini-essay or rant does not deserve a title.



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