The end of December is going to mark five months of me posting a poem up on Instagram every day. Five months of writing things I feel good about uploading – really doing my best not to miss a single day.
In a lot of ways, poetry seems easier on Instagram – it’s a medium that loves Hallmark length epithets of love and belonging and pain – a lot of us don’t have to dig terribly deep to find something to say about that. But at the same time, while I play to the tune of the format, I really try to only post pieces I can really feel myself in. I’ll write stanza-long pieces, but I don’t want to compromise my own style doing so. I still want to flash photographs in front of the screen and try to make you see them moving. I don’t want to be any less “me” on my Instagram front than I am writing pieces for magazine submissions, and my poetry collection.
Looking back at five months really brings you to terms with who you are as a writer. If you step outside yourself enough, it’s sort of like reading someone else’s poetry book and picking apart the common thematics, the recurring threads, the constant characters. As a writer, I like to think that everything I put down on the page is an artifact of myself and where I was at the time of writing, so in a weird way, these 200 or so uploads on my Blue Notes page has kind of been an exercise in hearing myself, and really trying to parse out what I have to say.
Knowing yourself happens in weird ways sometimes, I suppose.
To be honest, I’m not terribly sure what I’m getting at in this post. Maybe it’s less for you and more for myself – some kind of personal affirmation that I’ve done this for this long and want to keep doing this going forward until it hits whatever end that it hits. Maybe I need to put this down in words to make it concrete. Maybe I’m counting on you guys to keep me honest, so I don’t just sweep this entire thing under the rug one day and go on doing something else.
2017 got me to a point where I can do this – put work out there for people to see, and feel confident that it’ll connect with people without sacrificing my own voice for a louder half measure. For 2018, I’m gunning for something bigger.
As for what that is…maybe I’ll check back in with you next December about that.