5 Blogs

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This post is a review of sorts. I'll briefly talk about five blogs and bloggers that I have found to be interesting and expressive. If you wanted to do a similar post, leave me a comment. I'd love to be introduced to other expressive people!

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1. Timmy @ all humans are the same

I first met Timmy during a collaborative blog project where we were adapting writing by Samuel Beckett into online media (Interiority / Exteriority). One of the most interesting things about his writing and his blog is that he NEVER uses capital letters when he writes. But as you'll see if you check out his poetry, this is a strong point of his work. You might also like the graphics on his site, which are often in stark contrast to the content of the poems he's writing. Timmy is also the creator of one of the most difficult poetic forms I've ever seen, the slurkett. When I asked him, he told me that the rules are:

a slurkett is a poem of 15 lines of the following number of syllables:
12, 6, 18, 11
5, 14, 8, 19
13, 7, 16, 9
17, 10, 15

the following lines rhyme:
1, 9, 11 and 15
2, 6, 8 and 13
3 and 14
4, 7 and 10
5 and 12

the first letter of each line follows the first letter of the preceding line
by one in the alphabet ( "ex" may be used for the letter "x")

the following words or phrases must appear once:
"had a big"
"forever"
"in despair"
"of the moon"

a variation of 16 lines may be used. a line of 4 syllables is inserted as the next to last line.
it rhymes with the 5th and 12th lines and the last (now 16th) line rhymes with the 1st, 9th and 11th

This is not a form for the faint of heart! Give it a try if you're brave. I'm sure he'd love to see the results.

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2. Mark @ The Walking Man

Mark is from Detroit, and his writing is often based on the cityscape he knows and experiences everyday. In fact, he has recently published a book on the city, Stink. The title is some indication of the tone of the book. Sometimes political, sometimes irreverent, sometimes downright hilarious, his writing is always expressive and engaging. One of his most recent poems that I really like is called "Water Feature" and incorporates shape to give another dimension to the language. Shape poetry is one of my favorite forms. Check it out. He gets loads of comments on his site, but I'm sure that he'd be happy to hear from you if you haven't already met this prolific blogger.

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3. Mariana @ Sing Your Own Lullaby

What I like most about Mariana's blog is the way that she engages her readers. She always has a topic up for discussion that makes the hamsters in my brain run a little faster on the wheel. While often her posts are about topics that are scientific and about the physical world, there is always an element of the unknown in her writing and questioning. For example, one of her recent posts, "Meaning Theories" talks about the way that we know what we know (or what we think we know!). And even though the basic systems of meaning she outlined in the post cover a wide range of possibility, the responses in the comments on this post opened up many other avenues. Asking these kinds of questions is, in many ways, an impossible task for Mariana, but I have a feeling that her objective is not to offer answers (or even to find them) but more to foster discussion. That's what, in my opinion, makes her such an expressive person.

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4. Christopher @ View from the Northern Wall

Christopher describes himself as a "Mechanical designer for industry, once a Bay Area Hippie, went undercover in 1972, I've been writing poetry for years." What interests me most here is about his going undercover! Who would have thought the best way to not blow his cover would be to start up a blog!

Jokes aside though, what I like most about all of Christopher's posts is the way he combines narrative and poetry. Usually he introduces his poems with a short intro about the genesis of the piece, and about its significance for him as a writer or as an expressive person. For an example of this, you might want to see his post "A Typical Lesson" or "What an Order." Another thing about Christopher's blogging that I find so amazing is the frequency of his posts -- most every day. As someone who won't usually post more than a couple times a week (or even a couple times a month if there's lots on my plate) I respect this dedication to expressiveness. He sets the bar high for lots of us.

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5. Z @ Razor-Blade of Life

Z (and I'm almost sure that's not her real name ;) has been narrating her own and her families experience. On her blog you can find a pastiche of photos, description, and narratives of her life. What you may find interesting about her writing is the way that she's applied pseudonyms to her husband ("the Sage"), and her children and grandchildren. Lots of bloggers use nicknames for themselves and others they know in the "real" world outside of this virtual forum. You might want to do this too. Not only is it smart to help protect privacy, sometimes by giving a moniker to yourself, you can distance the real from the imaginary, or allow yourself to talk about ideas and things that you wouldn't necessarily want everyone you "know" to know about (not saying that this is what you're doing Z, just thought it might be a good example). If you want to see one of her posts that narrates the experience of the world in such a way, maybe check out "The Sage Surprises Z."

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Hope that you've liked this installment of 5 Blogs. I will try to review other blogs and expressive people as this site progresses. If you want to do a similar write-up of some of your friend's sites, please let me know. I love to check out new sites!

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8 comments

timmy said...

thanks for including me in your list. you are right, i would very much like to se some slurketts. you may have noticed that i have no slurkett # 1 posted - it's because the first one was so bad

September 13, 2009 at 8:00 PM
Jon said...

timmy,

Sure it's not as bad as the one that I tried after you gave me the form! I'm still planning on trying another slurkett, so I'll let you know how that goes.

September 14, 2009 at 12:46 AM
the walking man said...

I will have to copy the format fro a slurkett and see what an old mans mind can do with those particular format rules. Interesting to say the least.

Thanks for the nod Jon and yes THE WALKING MAN enjoys new travelers who want to walk in, throw a few sense into the pond or just pass silently threw, all footsteps are heard.

September 14, 2009 at 8:16 AM
Z said...

When I started, I thought I'd keep the blog anonymous, but it's harder to do that than one might think so I decided early on to make it a personal blog, but use nicknames to protect us from being Googled. Because it's chatty and informal, I've built up a circle of readers and so, although most of what I write is trivial, it draws people in once they've read a few times, not least because I treat them as friends and address them directly once in a while. 'Cosy' is a word sometimes used, which I reluctantly admit is accurate.

September 14, 2009 at 8:36 AM
Jon said...

Walking Man,
Good luck with the slurkett!!! It's quite a challenge, but I'm sure that you're up to it...

Z,
I fully understand what you mean about ungoogleability for bloggers. For a few years I was writing under the handle "Hopper", but decided at one point to use my real name for some reason or other. I guess there's not too much danger of anyone tracking me down with a name like Jon!
;)

September 14, 2009 at 1:22 PM
Mariana Soffer said...

Thank you very much Jon, I liked a lot what you say about my blog, you got the idea of it. That marvelous.

September 15, 2009 at 1:53 AM
Jon said...

Mariana,

I've got the idea???

Well at least I've got you fooled!!!

;)

September 22, 2009 at 4:11 AM
Mariana Soffer said...

You did good, with that I completely agree Jon, you made an interesting thing.

Big smile and green to you

September 23, 2009 at 1:56 PM