In class, we were assigned to read Bridging the Composition Divide: Blog Pedagogy and the Potential for Agnostic Classrooms by Janice Wendi Fernheimer and Thomas J. Nelson- it's timely as I was questioning what a blog does to writing and audience. A blog is a new genre - a space that is semi-private/semi-public. The shifting nature of it is interesting-- I'm using it more as a notebook and marker of things than a journal now.
Feign a great calm;
all gay transport soon ends.
Chant: who knows—
flight's end or flight's beginning
for the resting gull?
Heart, be still.
Say there is money but it rusted;
say the time of moon is not right for escape.
It's the color in the lower sky
too broadly suffused,
or the wind in my tie.
Know amazedly how
often one takes his madness
into his own hands
and keeps it.
* published in Poetry 42.6, September 1933
What birds plunge through is not that intimate space
in which you feel all forms intensified.
(There, in the Open, you'd be denied yourself
and vanish on and on without return.)
Space reaches out from us and translates each thing:
to accomplish a tree's essence
cast inner space around it, out of that space
that has its life in you. Surround it with restraint.
In itself it has no bounds. Only in the spell
of your renouncing does it rise as Tree.
— Rainer Maria Rilke (Trans. Edward Snow)
Durch den sich Vögel werfen, is nicht der
vertraute Raum, der die Gestalt dir steigert.
(Im Frein, dorten, bist du dir verweigert
und schwindest weiter ohne Wiederkehr.)
Raum greift aus uns und übersetzt die Dinge:
daß dir das Dasein eines Baums gelinge,
wirf Innenraum um ihn, aus jenem Raum,
der in dir west. Umgieb ihn mit Verhaltung.
Er grenzt sich nicht. Erst in der Eingestaltung
in dein Verzichten wird er wirklich Baum.
I've kept this blog around without updating it in nearly four years. It was my space to write in-between my transition from Japan in 2004 to life back in California--I was surprised by the frankness of my posts and how much I've changed since then. Most people didn't know about my blog, so it ended up being a confessional space--something I wouldn't share now. I've left a few posts that remind me of my time back then that aren't as confessional.
I'm always hesitant to start writing in my blog again--it becomes a journal when it's not a personal journal--some days I'm in a confessional mood and other days I'm very private, which is difficult to monitor in a blog when typing and clicking "publish" is so easy.
Writers are writing to an audience. Sometimes in a blog an audience is a friendly ear--one can only picture the eager blogger readers enjoying every secret disclosed. Reading my old posts, I noticed that there was an element of confession, but an element of resolution. As I typed, I figured out the whys of my wonders-- and I kept writing in that way because I felt closure--later I'd realized I'd disclosed too much.
Returning to this blog may be productive for me to do now as I'm close to finishing my first year of the MFA program in poetry. Last semester was a deluge of poetry for me. This semester I'm quiet. Giving myself some space to write out things in other venues and forms than poetry or academic papers may be what I need to gently keep my pulse going.