I was very much relieved recently when both Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and actor Johnny Depp admitted to hearing something go “Twitter-Twitter Tweet-Tweet,” like some Vulcan canary singing for its supper out in the depths of cyberspace, but didn’t have the faintest idea what it might be. Their public admission, I felt, placed me in very good company indeed.
“Twitter-Twitter Tweet-Tweet.” Say what?!
Belonging as I do to several progressive social networks, it was inevitable that someone should perch on one of my profiles and chirp about the wonders of Twitter. Many people were, I was told, using it as an extension of their daily texting. Some used it to network with business associates online; some to flirt; and some to avoid missing out on the latest hottest coolest techno trend that came fully equipped with celebrities of every make and model. I followed the link so kindly provided to one Tweeter’s page and then, um, well… In all honesty I just didn’t get it. I mean entire human minds reduced to a few grunts of 140 characters described as “Tweets!” How in the world was the author of a 400-page novel, an encyclopedia, four volumes of poetry, and reams of journalism supposed to reign in his pen with such cruel and unusual editorial punishment?
At least three months passed before I would even consider tweeting on Twitter again. And would you believe I did so because a storm drove hundreds of birds to seek shelter in my neighborhood trees where they chattered, chirped, and pooped all evening until I thought, Hmmm, could this possibly be a sign that I need to re-think my position on that one little blue Twitter-bird in particular? I decided to test the virtual waters–or should I say skies?–and, eventually, concluded that like most staples of modern techno-culture it is what one chooses, and is able, to make of it.
What I am trying to make of Twitter-Tweet culture is an opportunity to further enhance my connection with the global community and to explore creative ways of self expression within parameters established by a guiding force other than my own will. I also enjoy being educated on the different ways others utilize it; as, for instance, a public journal or electronic meeting room. Certainly the U.S. government’s recent request that Twitter postpone its scheduled routine maintenance in order to keep communication flowing between individuals trapped by the upheavals in Tehran and the rest of the world indicates that it, like YouTube and Google, has become one of the principle tools of citizen journalism and possibly democratic empowerment in our time.
So, in honor of Twitter-Tweeters across the globe, the following are five of my very own recent Tweet-Tweets which were employed in the flow of moments during which they made impressively clear sense. Outside of that specific cyber-zone, I’m not so sure what kind of sense they make. But I share them here as part of the world’s ongoing New Millennium enthusiasm for bridging divides, an enthusiasm that I consider one of the brighter lights on the shadowy horizon of humanity’s current historic endeavors.
Twitter-tweet 1) The green and golden winged bird of summer landed last Friday in my back yard. Drank sparkles from the fountain of my amused gaze.
Twitter-tweet 2) Watching on the news heads explode in Tehran when the TV screen cracks and blood gushes across the floor. Know it’s not real but how 2/b sure?
Twitter-tweet 3) Autographed a copy of ELEMENTAL for someone to send with luv to their once-upon-a-time. Thought that was beautiful of them.
Twitter-tweet 4) Poetry buzzes around my head neon bees spit honey-drops of moonlight and synonyms insist I accept the world for what it is even while giving all I can to make it better.
Twitter-tweet 5) The kind folks at Red Room featured my Dream Reachers blog at http://redroom.com/blog/aberjhani/in-company-these-pages
author of The American Poet Who Went Home Again
and The Bridge of Silver Wings 2009