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Posts Tagged ‘Blogging’

No idea

If you’ve been wondering why I haven’t blogged lately, well so have I

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On the spot

Four days of fumbling, scratching lines
Mixed thoughts cajoling round and round
While trying to slice and deal out time
To put down something that might rhyme

Perhaps a late return to prose
But lengthy business, explanations
Not quite trials and tribulations
And the frivolous and bland
Refuse to move from head to hand

Importance hardly recognized
Old ideas somehow compromised
Profusions of inanities
Serve to confuse
That’s how it is

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So here I sit to think what I’ll
deliver for the thousandth time.
Well, first my thanks to you who come
to visit and to comment on
my ramblings: subjects quite diverse
in prose and mostly rhyming verse.

I much enjoy your company
that bits and bytes make possible.
A social gathering designed
to air the thoughts that spring to mind;
share joy and sadness that pertain
to days exciting and mundane.

Although the Twitter sirens call
with powers to quip and mesmerize
a blog can offer broader charms:
while welcoming with open arms
it serves to share those pearls that rise
stirred by the muse in gentler guise.

A new millennium is near
just one more step and I’ll be there
advancing on time’s ladder tall
the past below always on call.
I hope you’ll join the climb with me.
Where will it lead? We’ll wait and see.

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Twittering is quite exhausting
Now I’ve done it for a while
Watching followers and followed
Reading things often futile

Lots of selling, also products
Whom to shun and to allow
Fighting to keep within limits
With a deeply furrowed brow

Blogging now almost forgotten
Though it comes more naturally
So I’m back here for a breather
Be it temporarily

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Flutter

To twitter and blog appears now quite a slog
But to make a choice difficult too
Something succinctly said
Is more easily read
And can pierce to the heart it is true

To twitter and blog appears now quite a slog
But the latter I’d rather not miss
For it has the power to
Air one’s thoughts through and through
An advantage one can’t just dismiss

To twitter and blog appears now quite a slog
But I guess that I’ll just wait and see
How it goes for a while
Being so versatile
There I go again just being me

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Rattle the keyboard;
let it all out.
If thoughts disgruntle
to the wall shout.
Vent your emotions
into the void.
Nobody viewing
then feel annoyed.
You out there searching
better beware
something might hit you
aimed with due care.

Fellow reporter
somewhere in space
star in the galaxy
one of the race
show me your ideas
what may arise
truths and opinions;
hold back the lies.
And if you’re truthful
I may be too.
Chances for honesty
shared by us two.

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It would seem odd, you might agree
if there were two who wrote like me,
and an impossibility
to find one that would then make three.

Expect some similarity
for minds are never quite alone,
and ideas from the same old stream
rise up when called to feed each dream.

You smile or grimace, just look bland,
at words that urge as a command
your memory to serve a dish
containing some of what I wish

to feed the hunger here inside
seasoned, perhaps, to bring some pride.
Would that your silent voice could speak
of admiration or critique.

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While bloggers mostly come and go,
some ramble on forever,
expressions of a private wish
to reach all with whatever.

Professionals there are as well
to sell or just be clever,
informing all who happen by
to further some endeavour.

A universe of noughts and ones
combining for whoever
applies their senses to some spot
that captivates, wherever.

Epilogue:

Rampaging nightmares of the id
Excruciating benders
Of minds that seek eternal bliss
Free from those damned contenders.

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One of the nightmares of writers is spelling mistakes that can change the meaning of a clause or sentence. I did it again yesterday in a post that because of its serious nature does rather demand accuracy. I used the word “metal” for “mettle”. I know I had the correct meaning in my head at the time but somehow the wrong word survived into the published version. The spelling and grammar checker in Word did not catch it, of course, because of the subtle nature of the fault. In such cases, one can but hope for kind understanding from the reader.

(more…)

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A sexton is a bell-ringer and general odd job man around the church if my Oxford Dictionary really knows anything about the subject. I hope they all have a fruitful life and can later pull in a good pension.
This piece has really nothing to do with sex or sextons – well not directly anyway – but I felt in a naughty mood and wanted to see how many readers would be drawn to my boudoir with the word blazoned in the heading to light up expectant eyes and attract those of a curious bent. I won’t get to find out who you are, of course, but the numbers should get pumped up somewhat. I realize this may work against me but what the hell have I got to lose. (more…)

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You may not like what I write but I can write what I like – send patterns of thought’s products across the ether, whether of a naughty, hoity-toity, humble, solid, or drippingly fluidic nature.
I read yesterday that there were around six and a half million new posts published on WordPress in November – staggering isn’t it?
I’m imagining now my blog as a tree in a huge forest, situated not near the edge but not in the middle either. The posts might then be the leaves and the pages branches. As in a real forest no two trees are alike so it is possible somehow to keep one’s bearings. There are all sorts of trees: some tall with luxuriant growth and others wilting and devoid of new leaves but with the old ones still hanging on to catch the wandering eye.
Of course, come to think of it I could just take the b from the word blog and make it a log and WordPress would then simply be a huge (b)log jam. The moderators would then be like those loggers who keep the logs in some sort of order and moving. So, we have bloggers and (b)loggers.
One could get even more adventurous and compare WordPress to a galaxy like our Milky Way, with the administration in the central whatever-it-is and each blog a star. The pages would then be each star’s planets and the posts those smaller bodies further out from the star known in our neck of the woods as dwarf planets, some of which have yet to be discovered (written). Google’s Blogger, for example, would then be a nearby sister galaxy.
As an aside, in the real solar system the latter bodies inhabit the so called Kuiper Belt, after its Dutch discoverer, or to be completely fair we should include two others who earlier saw the light (however dimly) and then we have the Leonard-Edgeworth-Kuiper Belt.
Here is an artist’s impression of the structure of our solar system with the said belt – see the resemblance to a blog?

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In the diagram above one sees the known objects in the Kuiper belt, derived from data from the Minor Planet Center. Objects in the main belt are colored green, while scattered objects are colored orange. The four outer planets are blue. Neptune’s few known Trojan asteroids are yellow, while Jupiter’s are pink. The scattered objects between the Sun and the Kuiper belt are known as centaurs. The scale is in astronomical units. The pronounced gap at the bottom is due to obscuration by the band of the Milky Way. (Thanks to Wikipedia and Author WilyD)

Is it just coincidence that we mimic Nature in so many ways? I don’t think so.
Anyway after this more serious stuff, which I hope you found at least a tiny bit interesting, let’s get back to basics.
So WordPress is huge, gigantically huge if one reduces its content to zeros and ones. In the forest analogy, one can search for some tree at the forest’s Information Center, where each tree has a name and a place. One can also just take a stroll amongst the trees, all of which have small plaques of information on the ground before them, perhaps dropping pebbles as one goes just to be on the safe side (the history recorded by the browser). Although there’s a huge map on the wall of the Center where every tree is marked, they don’t have any maps to take away :-). There are colored paths marked out on the map which follow certain categories (tags) of trees, so if one is looking for something special then one can follow one of these paths.
Fortunately, it’s always daylight in the forest so one can quite safely wander around during actual days and nights, and it’s only very occasionally closed for maintenance so if one does come at the wrong time one probably won’t have to wait long.
One does wonder a bit about the size of the forest getting out of hand. What if a fire started somewhere or some pranksters mess around with the plaques or steal the map or something?
I expect the owners have covered all eventualities as well as they can. Fortunately, one can make a clone of one’s own tree and replant it if necessary (via import and export).
Well, if the weather stays dry I might take a walk in the woods nearby this afternoon. Unfortunately, most of its trees are void of posts with winter approaching though there are still a few evergreens.

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My computer, an aging desktop model, is going away for a week. It was all rather sudden but it had to get away it said, otherwise it couldn’t guarantee being able to blog any more because it wasn’t feeling all that well.
How does it speak to me? Through emails of course, doesn’t yours?
So anyway, rather reluctantly I said okay though I’m sure my sour expression spoke book loads, even though I quickly added a smile of compassion.
It’s going to a recuperation center where it’ll be cleared of all toxins and other bits and bobs lying around inside its hard discs. It also needs a good rubbing down (massage it calls it, can you imagine?) to clear away the dust and other unsavory remains of the last six months.
It hopes it hasn’t caught any viruses because that might put a real damper on the proceedings. It knows I do everything within my power to keep it healthy though apparently it doesn’t rate my power too highly, especially as I still refuse to invest in a new firewall to replace the Windows one which it looks on with disdain and mistrust. I’ve tried to explain that the modem has a firewall of its own and that I’ve had bad experiences with those I’ve tried but that doesn’t seem to satisfy it. Well, I’m satisfied and it seems to have accepted the stalemate, at least for the time being.
When it comes back all shiny and irritably refreshed I expect the bickering will start again.
I have a notebook (well, actually, I’m not its true owner as it keeps telling me) but after a long discussion – it does so go on – it refuses to take over the blogging job because it says it doesn’t have the necessary know how and doesn’t trust me to set things up correctly even if it would consider it. Irritable little twerp! It even threatens switching itself off if I try to log in! Can it really do that?
I hope your “comrades” are more accessible than my tormentors. Perhaps it’s just an age thing.
Well, I know it’s all a shock but I promise I’ll be back in business as soon as possible.

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I was visiting someone’s site this morning which contains the author’s poetry and some short stories. The latest poem was full of feeling and quite moving but, for me, the flow could have been better. There were just too many pebbles causing disturbing eddies.
I got to thinking how difficult it is to comment on poetry, especially as I don’t consider myself anyone who is qualified to pass judgment on another’s work. This author gets more visitors than I do, for heavens sake!
Of course, on a personal level, what it boils down to is, “Do I like it or not?”
But I don’t find it easy to convey the reason why using such an impersonal medium as the internet. One naturally tends to be overly considerate of the other’s feelings and to often hide negative comments by not commenting at all, though this does rather defeat the object of the exercise. Then again, poets are often those teetering on the edge of insanity so one must be wary of giving them a push in the wrong direction :-).
An added disadvantage is the fact that commenting hardly ever takes the form of a dialogue in real time.
So commenting does tend to give, at best, a distorted view of one’s talents. If one desires better qualification, one can throw one’s efforts to the wolves by posting them on a site where “experts” are gathered and constantly shifting in their seats waiting to cast their opinions. I have occasionally done this, though it can be quite an unnerving experience – definitely not for the squeamish.
Of course, there’s still a lot of disagreement concerning style and technique.
Should poetry be punctuated like prose or only when necessary to avoid confusion? Should first letters be capitals?
Flow is important though rhyming is not necessary in achieving it.
Getting a poem to flow without recourse to rhyming is a most demanding task, one I avoid as much as possible. Anyway, I like rhyming.
I must admit to having a preference for poems of a more philosophical nature and humor can be quite refreshing. Deeply personal emotional outbursts often leave me floundering in the dark desperately trying to find a light switch. Come to think of it many less hard hitting poems do that too, though no doubt this can often be put down to a dismal failure on my part to comprehend.
That’s another thing, lack of comprehension. I personally avoid adding explanations to poems as they seem to me to rather destroy the element of discovery. Of course, this implies that one should equally strive to avoid a lack of clarity, something in which I am undoubtedly not always successful especially when delving into more abstract topics.
And there you have it again, commenting is the desired means of communication between author and reader also to restore clarity, though for the reasons given above its usefulness is too often limited.

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It seems to me that blogging can be compared to an “open house” where the door’s nearly always open and anyone can come in and look around. The owners might be there at the front door to meet you, working in house or out back pulling the weeds. Maybe they’re away for a short vacation. If they’re home and you want to chat, ask questions or make suggestions then fire away, but try to match the politeness of the inhabitants. Anyway, it’s certainly appreciated if one enters something in the visitor’s book before leaving.

Well, what have I got on offer today to any would be visitor who has either been here before and enjoys the company and the ambience, lost their way and ended up here by accident or arrived just out of curiosity.

It’s been a bit quiet here lately – haven’t had much inspiration as you’ve already gathered. I’ve been reading quite a bit though.

I’ve been following Bill Bryson with some enjoyment on his trip through America in “The Lost Continent”. He delivers a rather negative view of America in the late 1980’s with its over-commercialization and a general lack of interest in preservation and conservation. Although a born American, he had already lived a while in Great Britain when he undertook this visit to the States to find his dream town Amalgam – a childhood fantasy. The people don’t come off too well as seen by this now British tourist. Nevertheless there’s a lot of humor and entertaining flashbacks of his earlier life in Iowa and childhood holidays with his extremely frugal father. A good read if you don’t take his critique too seriously.

Just for the fun of it I got to thinking about possibly useful and invigorating courses that might be available if one searches around:

1. “Brick making for beginners” with its companion course “Simple kilns”

2. “Vegetable growing without a garden”

3. “How to remain on equal terms with your cat”

4. “Easy ways to walk your dog”

5. “Caged bird psychology”

6. “Serious tax evasion”

7. “Coercion techniques for managers” with its companion course “Coercion

essentials for employees”

8. “Effective rush hour tactics” with its companion course “Advanced shoving”

9. “How to drive slowly without annoying other road users”

Well just a few ramblings for now.

Have a better one!

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Up and away

Well, I’m off on a short holiday to restore the juices. I’ll be back on the 27th May, so make a note in your diaries 🙂
In the meantime may the force be with you all.
Oh, and for any potential thieves, we have a seven foot gorilla watching the house.
P.S.
His strapping family members have arrived now as well.

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Oh sweet muse
Do not forsake, if thou must choose,
One such as I, so moved by thee,
But flotsam on thou gentle sea.

There are so many poets out there on the web, sowing and weaving words into tapestries of color or black and white and everything in between, some of which magically take flight and either flutter by like butterflies, light and airy; or swoop like hawks, heavy and intense, stirring eddies as they pass.
All forms of poetry are represented though it appears that free verse is the most popular variety, if my infrequent voyages on this vast ocean of feeling are anything to go by. It’s an obvious choice for one who doesn’t want to be bothered with rhyming, which seemingly most aren’t.  This is not to say that rules aren’t needed even for this form, but the poets themselves must make up the rules for each of their poems! Free verse should also have rhythm, though it may not have a regular beat. Different poetic devices may be woven into a piece forming patterns of sound and repetition.
For general poetry including rhyming techniques I recommend the book by Stephen Fry, “The Ode Less Traveled”, not only technically complete but entertaining to boot. He doesn’t have much truck with free verse though he acknowledges the fact that it’s here to stay.
Punctuation is also something that the great minds differ on. The general rule appears to be: use only when needed to avoid confusing the reader.
On the Internet it is a law that only those who comment on others get commented on in return, and so are allowed to swirl up into the warm sunlight above the scudding clouds of obscurity. It’s a give and take society.
I find poetry much more difficult to comment on than to write, not that the latter’s easy. Who am I who dares to comment on another’s work? I’m no expert after all and I don’t want to just say nice things even when I don’t mean them.
Of course everyone is often critical or jealous of another’s achievements, but who is going to tell someone that they can better go away and chop wood. Even the latter won’t be totally ignored if they comment on the work of others, though they do form an irritating burden to the unhappy group they elbow their way into.
To be really effective critique should arise from a consensus view of renowned experts or from someone with the stature to speak for others forming such a consensus. Largely speaking, good poets are the ones who other good poets say are good, which also applies to good small poets. This leaves the amateur rather out in the cold.
I have noticed a trend. As suggested above amateur poets tend to gather in groups for mutual protection. Their members generally just say nice things to one another or remain silent for as long as possible. In these groups there is little risk of being exposed to significant critique and any that does make an appearance is often cleverly disguised. At worst such a response will set the recipient back a day or two or allow them to fall into the arms of another much more enlightened member of the group. One can also remain popular within the group by avoiding critique by talking about everything except the poem concerned, especially if one knows something of the personal life of the poet concerned. In any case it’s generally advisable when commenting to use as few words as possible while remaining as polite as possible. In groups, therefore, commenting obviously loses much of its bite and constructive critique is best left to those with experience of subterfuge. Some might not agree but that is my experience.
Although there are undoubtedly exceptions most poets write for themselves and not for any audience, but all seek favorable recognition as being something better than a monkey tapping on the keyboard. Not that monkeys (our near ancestors after all) wouldn’t perhaps be at least as good if not better than some human efforts.
If I may, I would advise any budding poet to read lots of other poetry and study the subject before proceeding. This might appear boring and it often is, but it can be quite beneficial to any would be sufferers. Of course, if one strives for perfection then one can throw ones efforts to the wolves via some forum where no one will be unnecessarily kind, but this isn’t for the light hearted.
Anyway, good luck to those who dare. If someone is touched by what you write then that is praise enough.

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From me to you

Who are the ones who read my blog?
Do they just sneer or sit agog?
There are some who are oh so kind
Though honesty is hard to find
And silence often hides the truth
Of blandness, or just the uncouth
I am but one who claims to be
Able to serve without a fee
Wisdom I wouldn’t dare to say
Not often foolish anyway
Amusement or a different view
Just words that stir from me to you
There are those who have gone before
And said it better I am sure
But still, what falls from fingers tap
I hope might fill some hidden gap
That no one has quite done as I
A lonely cloud that treads the sky
To bring a little shade to bear
Upon those blinded by the glare
Of rationality’s cold light
That burns the brain both day and night
So reader, there you have it then
I’ve said my piece, perhaps again.

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The beach

This page is like a grain of sand that lies upon some beach
And with each tide new grains appear and some sink out of reach
Some are ground down to nothing by the pounding of that sea
I wonder if you’ll find this grain — this microcosmic me.

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