Blogging can be an effective form of therapy. You get to step onto your proverbial soapbox and rant and rave about this, that and the other. You can blog as often or infrequently as you’d like and you don’t get charged for missed appointments.
Here’s the thing though. Blogging is a little like the mysterious tree that falls in the forest when everyone is at the mall. Did it make any noise? How do we know? Ruling out Facebook shares and retweets, it’s impossible to measure exactly how much noise I’ve made by sharing my piece along with a piece of my mind. I can only venture to hope that somewhere in our buzzing universe I’ve helped you sit up and think or – perhaps even better – sit down and smile.
I check in with the more illustrious blogging elders on this platform. Witty, well spoken words deserve 652 shares. I can easily understand why this delightful piece would evoke such a hearty response. I also proceeded to share on my Facebook page and gleefully plunked it into a handful of my WhatsApp chats. As for me, I’m satisfied when I get nine shares here, but I’m even happier when I meet a stranger (or perhaps a “familiar”) and I get to hear — “Your article or poem about…really inspired (or encouraged) me.”
I shed tears of emotion when I learned that one of my poems was read at a funeral and recoiled in horror when one online reader snippily called me out on a grammar mistake. Regularly, I reach out to Miriam, the editor of this platform, asking her to tweak an already published piece. Miriam is very gracious, but there is only so much she can do. I need to take responsibility for what comes out of my mouth as well as for what rolls off my fingertips.
All this reflection and rumination can really ruin it for a writer. Thoughts along these lines keep my laptop literally untouched:
- I don’t have anything of importance to say today.
- I suffer from comma and quotation mark angst.
- (Insert name of popular blogger) says it way better than anyone else can.
- Poetry is flimsy.
- I already wrote about that. I don’t want to be redundant.
- I’m treading on thin ice with this topic. I dare not tread in such touchy times.
- Does it really matter?
The good news is that writing always seems to win. As I gravitate to the keyboard, the following reassuring thoughts steer me back to what I know for sure:
- Only G-d is perfect.
- Ask the experts.
- Only I can say it the way I would say it.
- Poetry is art. Not everyone loves art but it’s worth sharing for those who do.
- If I do repeat myself, my point may be worth repetition.
- Treading is great exercise. Helps build get-up-and-go muscles.
- Yes, I think it does matter. I hope you do too.
So here I am, once again, happily blogging. And I’m going to press ‘submit’ before I change my mind.
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“The Jewish people are compared to the stars twinkling in the high heavens. By their light, even he who walks in the darkness of night shall not blunder.
Every Jew, man or woman, possesses enough moral and spiritual strength to influence friends and acquaintances, and bring them into the light.” (Hayom Yom, 5 Cheshvan)