Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Need for Speed

I’ve updated to one of those dandy up-to-the-minute blog rolls with equal parts pleasure and terror. The pleasure’s in the way the instant updates make you feel like blogging’s an almost real-time conversation with some of your favorite poetry-savvy friends and acquaintances. My blog roll’s not anywhere near exhaustive, but I’ve got a manageable 140-some links at right that feel more than ever like a giant cocktail party, where you hear snatches of interesting conversation in one group, then sidle up for a minute to the next. Thick as blogs are, I’m guessing we’ll look back on this as a dewy-eyed golden age, where things were still just manageable enough to seem anything like a conversation.

The terror’s in the potential to turn all poetry talk into blog-sized banter, and to lose the poems for the trees. My own online reading habits are sloppy and horizontal—perfect for these dynamic new blog rolls—while the Ubuwebs and PennSounds and Cross-Cultural Poetics interviews go almost totally unclicked. The instant updates also encourage me to read the frequent posters who climb to the top, while the week-olds languish without any visits. I guess my concern is that poetry will come to resemble more than it already does the conditions of blogging: no past, bottomless present, future three minutes from now. Though why should that be a concern? Shouldn’t it be the chance for a new poetics to emerge that matches the new ways we read?

1 comment:

Annandale Dream Gazette said...

yup. I think so.