Hello, this is Lucia, I just saw my name listed and figured I better post something as the new half-time blogger. Blogger! Will this prove to be a big mistake?
I have more questions than statements, and I hope people drifting through can add their thoughts. Not having had much exposure to the blog world, naturally I am interested in the relation between it and poetry itself.

I briefly had a blog (I guess it’s still there, cyberspace not having developed much of a cemetery system yet), but I grew bored of it, deciding that I’d rather read books of poems, and write them, rather than spend my time on my blog. Part of this decision came from the physical logistics: I needed to get out of the seated position and to go into some other contortion from which it would be difficult to type (I’m still on dial-up, a voluntary limitation that’s supposed to keep me from spending too much time on-line).
And yet, because I gave up my university affiliation some years ago, I do see the social value of the computer world, its ability to connect people who live in far-flung places, without access to libraries or like minds. I am one of those people! But what is the correspondence between blog conversation and face-to-face relationships? You might say they’re better, because theoretically they’re more diverse, unbounded by geography. But no kisses, no grabbing of collars, no jabs to the chin!
The blog world also as presented here breaks down the hierarchical nature of the poetry machine as it is manifest through universities and conferences and publications. That is, anyone can comment, anyone can publish, the poet who out-ranks you may respond to your query (I’ve heard that David Bowie drops into his web site to chat). I’m interested in such venues that break down authority—participatory theater, open mikes etc (they are often awful but I’ve also been struck by useful inspiration in the midst of my tuning out).
Now that we have attached another layer of ephemera to the art, will it transform poetry, and if so, how? For the good? Is it even intelligible to speak of good when it comes to art?
And who drifts through here and why?

Originally Published: June 3rd, 2008

Lucia Perillo grew up in the suburbs of New York City. She earned a BSc in wildlife management from McGill University in Montreal and worked for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service before earning an MA in English from Syracuse University. Perillo was the author of numerous collections of poetry, including Dangerous...

  1. June 4, 2008
     Emily Warn

    Welcome to Harriet, Lucia. You're our first dial-up blogger! We're looking forward to reading what you have to say from a less information-noisy outpost.
    Best, Emily

  2. June 4, 2008
     Paul Guest

    Hey Lucia,
    Fancy seeing you here. A little surprised but I'm pleased. I'll be reading.

  3. June 4, 2008

    What a great bit of datum. That I'd know someone who flits through. But you didn't answer the question: why. And what does it mean that we are having this little conversation in public?

  4. June 5, 2008
     Mary Meriam

    Hello Lucia Perillo
    I’ve been asking myself similar questions, since I’m not usually drawn to blogs. I’m also on dial-up and just about as far-flung as you can get. For me, Harriet is a particularly fresh and fragrant field of flowers to drift and flit around, sometimes finding inspiration, or even new friends (hi, Reginald and Jonathan David). At least once, I’ve used something I posted here for another purpose, so there’s the practical side, too. As V. Woolf wrote, “...in those days [people at luncheon parties] were accompanied by a sort of humming noise, not articulate, but musical, exciting...” Harriet is like a luncheon party for me. The bloggers are so highly articulate and prolific that it becomes a pleasant humming noise, perfect for a butterfly.

  5. June 6, 2008

    I get the hum. I will even buy the musicality of it. My fear though is that it's too much of a ROAR, But perhaps this is just my tendency toward obsession. Now I'm checking in on Harriet all the time, lurking.