(Frog hangin’ out on his pad at the Nisqually Wildlife Refuge.)
I sometimes wonder about Emily Dickinson’s world. A recluse who wore white and eschewed publicity, a prolific writer of untitled poems — here is a verse I find especially humorous:
I’m nobody! Who are you?
Are you nobody, too?
Then there’s a pair of us — don’t tell!
They’d banish — you know!
How dreary to be somebody!
How public like a frog
To tell one’s name the livelong day
To an admiring bog!
What would Emily make of our world today? Who isn’t croaking their name the livelong day, including moi?
The Boomers, the Millenials, the Gen-Xers — we croak everywhere in order to keep up with our public: Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter. And just when we’re current with one platform, another one pops up for distraction. It’s become a game of whack-a-mole.
But is social media turning us into hermits, albeit of a different kind? Are we becoming techno-hermits tapping into our smart phones, i-pads, as we sit across from each other at Starbucks, no eye contact?
This is different from Emily’s retreat into self — she set the bar high and literature reaped the benefits of her hermitage. Time and a lack of tools was on her side.
I realize I am privileged to have world-wide connection. I am presently learning collage techniques on YouTube — but I can’t help but ask myself — Who am I? Who is this person who feels compelled to post about Emily, who herself had her first book of poetry published posthumously in 1890?
Am I a dreary person for wanting to croak to the entire world on this blog before I croak?
Do I really want to be a Nobody?
I do not claim to be that humble.
Nor do I want to be Lady Gaga. I guess I just want to tell my tale the livelong day to an “admiring BLOG.”