December 2, 2006
In this special edition of “reconstruction” which focuses on blogging practices is the following article which I found especially fascinating:
Design and Play: Weblog Genres of Adolescent Girls in Israel by Carmel L. Vaisman
I like the focus on visual practices of bloggers (though claims that other researchers aren’t examining the visual are not accurate, i.e. Sally Humphrey’s fabulous article here) - but it is nevertheless great to see that multimodal analysis is being discussed widely. Here is the abstract:
Abstract: Unique circumstances existing in the Israeli blogsphere have attracted many adolescent girls. In recent years, a growing number of weblogs belonging to adolescent girls are challenging blogging norms, creating a tension between written narratives and performance narratives that combine design and play practices. Existing weblog research has explored the connections between gender, linguistic features, and genre but has not examined visual blog genres, nor questioned the role of features inherent in weblog software in the formation of gendered blog genres and blogging norms. Based on a work-in-progress of a larger scope, I shall argue that design supportive features distinctive to Israeli weblog software are directly responsible for the emergence of new blog genres and blogging norms, as well as for attracting many adolescent girls to blogging.
December 8, 2005
I am so thrilled and proud to announce that two of my research participants, Tiana and Jandalf (aka Audreidi) were winners in the 2005 NaNoWriMo (national November writing month) event! Yay!!! Congratulations!!!
Here is Tiana’s “library card” (don’t you love the metaphors being used here!)
Here is the cover page of the novel she wrote:
and here is an excerpt:
Isn’t NaNoWriMo such a fabulous idea?! I can’t wait to find out how the girls feel about their published novels in comparison to their published fan fiction pieces. I am really excited for them because it feels to me that these novels and this whole process authenticates them as legitimate authors in a way that fanfiction.net doesn’t. How wonderful is this!!
December 7, 2005
I wish I could have had a wireless laptop to live blog the conference because now that its over it feels rather odd doing a retrospective post. But as promised, here goes! Oh and a disclaimer: I was soo exhausted that I didn’t make as many sessions as I listed, and also, there was an unfortunate clash or two in the program which meant that I couldn’t listen to everybody I wanted to.
So, the first session I went to at the conference was Julia and Guy’s session about blogging:
Inside Out: academic blogging and new literacies, an autoethnography
Julia Davies and Guy Merchant
This was a fun session and I looooooved the aesthetics of the presentation, with gorgeous images and fun transitions. I was also cited, which was very flattering! I liked the way they moved quickly beyond the descriptive (how come so many conference presentations focussed on the descriptive only at the expense of theorisation and analysis???) and into the analysis of posts and comments, discussing theoretical issues and critiqueing notions of “affinity spaces” and “communities of practice” as far as they relate, and don’t relate, to the blogosphere. We had many casual conversations about blogs and identity and narrative after this presentation and I’ll be blogging more about those later! Anyway this was a great session and stimulated much discussion and thinking.
Next was our session:
Out of Bounds: Some social, psychological and pedagogical implications of new literacies for young people’s learning, lifeworlds and social futures.
Angela Thomas, Kevin Leander and Michele Knobel
I have already blogged about my talk, but the slides are here if you missed it.
Kevin Leander spoke about his study of girls in a girls school that had wireless technology. Essentially he critiqued the institutional use of technology and the low expectations of teachers when the students were able to work at a very sophisticated level.
Michele Knobel spoke about memes and ‘big L’ ‘little l’ L/literacies. It was a really fun talk too, but also stimulating as she spoke about counter-meming as a social critical literacy practice - and I liked the links to the work of Adbusters.com and the strategies for counter-meming outlined at memecentral.com/antidote.htm, and allyourbrand.org/why.htm - I need to look into these more at some time!
Our discussant was Cynthia Lewis:
Cynthia made some lovely remarks and raised questions about “what counts” as literacy as far as schooling is concerned. I thought Cynthis was very insightful!
Then we had Don Leu’s Presidential address:
New Literacies, Reading Research, and the Challenges of Change: a Deictic Perspective of our Research Worlds
I found Don Leu’s talk interesting but targetted to a) an audience who needed to be convinced about new literacies; and b) the American audience. So basically he said “new literacies are here to stay and we need to attend to them” and “Americans aren’t getting into new literacies as much as they should”. I thought he was very sweet and humble in acknowledging all of his colleagues and doctoral students in influencing his understandings about new literacies.
Wednesday evening was Julia’s birthday party as I already mentioned in my very quick post, and here is the birthday girl herself, looking gorgeous and glam:
Isn’t her necklace amazing!? Here’s a close-up:
and here’s some of her DIVINE birthday dessert:
I sat between Julia and Jennifer:
and across from the very animated Guy:
Also at the table were:
and several other people whose names I have embarrassingly forgotten (profuse apologies if you are one of them)!
Are we only up to Thursday!? On Thursday Julia and I snuck out at lunch time for a little shopping expedition, which she blogged about here.
Question: what is Julia doing here???
(Click here to find out!)
I also noticed Julia taking a photo of somebody taking a photo of somebody else so I thought I should take a photo of that and continue the chain:
Oh! And we also came across a guy that wrote our names on a single grain of rice! Now I didn’t really want one but purely because I’d seen one of the characters doing it from the digital fiction called The Strand, which I blogged about recently, I thought I had to have one! I think there is something to say there about feeling some sort of identification with a narrative or fictional character that you associate with it through its artefacts, but I am not sure what yet!
One of my favourite sessions was the afternoon session that followed our shopping expedition!
Social Constructions in New Literacy Environments
Chair(s) & Discussant(s): Charles K. Kinzer, Teachers College, Columbia University
With the rise of the concept of “new literacies,” literacy is increasingly acknowledged as including participation in broadly defined communities of practice. Concurrently, literacy has become influenced by new technologies, which incorporate their own social practices. The symposium examines the social literacies surrounding one of these electronic environments: video games.
1. Digital Literacies and Massively Multiplayer Online Games
Constance A. Steinkuehler, University of Wisconsin-Madison
2. Agency and Authority: Social Practices in Interactive Storytelling
Jessica Hammer, Teachers College, Columbia University
3. Playing the Digital Divide: Video-game-related literacy practices and SES
Gillian Andrews, Teachers College, Columbia University
Constance talked about her study of World of Warcraft. I enjoyed seeing the range of literacy practices involved and I liked the analysis of gaming practices as scientific habits of mind. I hadn’t actually heard the term “persistent virtual worlds” before to describe MMORPGs either, so that was interesting.
Jessica talked about agency in role-playing games. I thought Jessica’s talk was wonderfully theorised and enjoyed being taken in a different direction as far as role-playing and narrative construction is concerned. I think she focussed more on adult role-playing and more sophisticated narrative constructions, as the stuff I am looking at is much less pre-planned, so it’s given me lots of ideas! I liked the points she made about interactivity as giving the illusion of free will. It reminded me of when I was a teacher and used to trick kids into doing what I wanted by offering them choices and making the ideal choice so attractive that they had to select it!! (Ummm… I still do that with my undergrad students, but that is another story!)
Gillian (Gus) spoke about the types of games selected by different types of readers - she made some really useful links to Gee’s work and talked about self-as-avatar, which I would have loved to hear more about! (Who made these sessions limited to 20 minutes? Never enough time to take in everything!!)
I also went to Brian Street’s session:
Literacy Across Cultural Contexts: Implications for Pedagogy and Curriculum
Brian covered a lot of ground in this session (too much to remember!) but something he spoke about that was totally new to me was lowrider art as a literacy practice. He showed how this doodle-like art by young non-English speakers was used as a communicative literacy practice, and I’d like to find out more about this.
Thursday evening I collapsed in my room with exhaustion and tried to write some discussant comments for a session I was involved with the next day. It was very unfortunate for me as I missed out on a fun evening with Julia, Guy, Michele, Sarah, Dana, Rebecca and a heap of others *sniffle*.
So Friday morning was the session by Marion Fey:
Gender Issues in Post-Typographical Texts and Talk: Past, Present and Future
Chair: Barbara Guzzetti
Discussants: Donna Alvermann, Suzanne Wade and Angela Thomas
Marion traced her extensive research into issues about gender and technology. Suzanne made some wonderful theoretical links between her work and Marions, and mentioned Susan Herring’s work. I also mentioned Susan Herring, Lois Scheidt, and colleagues in my response. I talked about: debates about language and gender, performativity of gender in online spaces and collaboration and social software.
Next was another FABULOUS session by the team from Teacher’s College:
Conceptions of Narrative in Non-Traditional Environments
New environments are redefining literacy and literacy practices. However, while non-traditional environments incorporate visual elements in traditional print materials, they still may be categorised as either narrative or expository. This symposium looks at various non-traditional environments to explore the question of narrative construction and definition.
1. Considering Narrative in New Environments
Charles K Kinzer
2. Examining Narrative as Sequential “Sense” in Comics
3. Narrative Strategies in Improvisational Storytelling
Charles Kinzer spoke about Second Life - like most of the sessions I saw, I was left wanting more and with more questions than answers.
Jonathon spoke a lot about the role of transitions or break points in the narratives of comics (great stuff!),
and Jessica spoke about issues of narration, improvisation and collaboration in role-playing in general, as well as issues of continuity, consistency and coherence in narrative in particular.
Again, this team of researchers are really doing wonderful and innovative studies - I would loooove to work with them!!!
In fact, on Saturday morning I had a lovely meeting with Charles (Chuck) Kinzer:
and we talked about the possibility of some fun projects we can collaborate on!!
There were other lunches and dinners and coffees and drinks and the “New Literacies Bash” - in fact some of the most interesting and stimulating discussions were those that took place outside of the conference! I had a lovely talk with Guy over dinner on my last evening and we wondered “Are we like our blogs?” - which led to all sorts of fascinating thoughts about literacy, identity, narrative, projection, virtuality/reality and so on!
And, on my final day I had a minor crisis which I won’t go into here but I want to say a huge THANK YOU to Katina Zammit (my fellow Australian traveller) for being such an angel and rescuing me from a difficult situation!!
So, that was my overview of NRC - an interesting conference made fabulous because of the wonderful company - especially Julia, Guy and Michele!
November 26, 2005
Well, now I have discovered one of the popular tweenie hang-outs, a wonderful anime role-playing site online called Gaia.
Jessica (Sally’s daughter who is in the 6th grade) and her friends are deeply ensconced into the world of anime and manga. The gaia site is fabulous, it has forums (discussion based and role-playing), avatars, journals with commenting enabled, instant messaging and an amazing virtual economy where the girls are earning “gold” by trading things - avatars, images, objects, sig files they make and so on. They can also earn gold with every post they make (which is a good motivation for writing and role-playing!) and for time spent on the site, friends they invite in etc. Some of them also convert their role-playing ideas into fan fiction and upload it to fanfiction.com.
These are predominantly 10 - 14 year olds, and when I asked both Jessica and her friend about school, they both screwed up their noses. Her friend told me that her teachers just get them to do exercises out of a text book and barely talks to them!!! Isn’t it criminal, to see what they’re doing here and to see the excitement and investment they have in their online communities, and to compare that to how disengaged and disenfranchised they are in their school worlds! Jessica sooo excitedly showed me her anime sketches and her role-playing and talked at length about the plots, the world of guilds and quests and the manga novels she reads. And yet, Sally told me she is worried about her lack of interest in school. But it must be a difficult balancing act for parents to try and encourage kids to do homework which consists of boring, tedious exercises from a text book, and letting them engage in their online worlds that are so rich and intellectually stimulating. What a dilemma!
November 19, 2005
Watch my NRC talk as a slideshow on flickr!
(Why did I put it on flickr? Because my faculty NEVER has their server accessible!!! Thank goodness for blog spaces and flickr, or I’d never have a web presence! The old version of the paper is here, but the new version will be in my forthcoming e-selves book).
November 16, 2005
Thanks to BigPond Movies, I am getting home delivered DVDs each month (at just over $2 a DVD) and have been enjoying slowly making my way through their entire French arthouse collection! But I have been deeply disturbed by this movie which I watched last night: A ma Soeur! Here’s a plot summary from imdb:
A Ma Soeur! is a provocative and shocking drama about sibling rivalry, family discord and relationships. Elena is 15, beautiful and flirtatious. Her less confident sister, Anais, is 12, and constantly eats. On holiday, Elena meets a young Italian student who is determined to seduce her. Anais is forced to watch in silence, conspiring with the lovers, but harbouring jealousy and similar desires. Their actions, however, have unforeseen tragic consequences for the whole family.
This is an amazing film, which is so real in its portrayal of adolescent sexuality (rather than the romanticised visions of “young love” that we usually see) that it is heart wrenching - I couldn’t sleep last night because of how it affected me.
November 2, 2005
So, NaNoWriMo has commenced! For anybody unfamiliar with it, here’s an excerpt from the site:
National Novel Writing Month is a fun, seat-of-your-pants approach to novel writing. Participants begin writing November 1. The goal is to write a 175-page (50,000-word) novel by midnight, November 30.
Valuing enthusiasm and perseverance over painstaking craft, NaNoWriMo is a novel-writing program for everyone who has thought fleetingly about writing a novel but has been scared away by the time and effort involved.
Because of the limited writing window, the ONLY thing that matters in NaNoWriMo is output. It’s all about quantity, not quality. The kamikaze approach forces you to lower your expectations, take risks, and write on the fly.
Make no mistake: You will be writing a lot of crap. And that’s a good thing. By forcing yourself to write so intensely, you are giving yourself permission to make mistakes. To forgo the endless tweaking and editing and just create. To build without tearing down.
Tiana and Jandalf (two of my long-term research participants) are both participating and writing new fan fiction based novels. Here’s Tiana’s description of her proposed novel:
Unlike the Nameless’s plot, this one’s a fantasy parody concerning a girl and an ocean and a bunch of elemental theory crap regarding magnets, a vampire, and elf queen, a crazy old wizard, a birthday party, and a sleeping princess. (rolls eyes) Or something like that.
I am impressed :> It’s such a novel idea (pun intended!). I also love the fact that the community are writing to raise money, and half of the proceeds will go to building children’s libraries in Laos, in association with Room to Read.
And although Tiana and Jandalf are participating “just because”, there’s also information for teachers about how to involve classes of children in the nanowrimo event.
Next year I might even participate myself!!!
October 1, 2005
Thanks to Jandalf for pointing me to these hilarious flash animations parodying the heirarchy of teen girl cliques.
August 10, 2005
Tiana’s investment into her role-playing characters constantly amazes me. Here’s the latest series of letters she wrote and a first person point of view poem. I am in the middle of trying to write up all this stuff and to be honest I am finding it rather overwhelming! Writing book chapters seems to be easy for me, but writing an entire book, even one based on my PhD has been more challenging than I expected. Not because writing is difficult, more the psychological side of how big it seems. Anyway here is Tiana’s genius yet again:
Letters from a Jedi Master
This is a few of a series of letters written by Ariane. It’s safer to just not ask. :-/ Wrote from a general perspective after Myrkr and on in the series of next few months. There’s no particular meaning to them. They’d appear all as written in Ekaeli… if you’d like to see, I’ll scribble out and scan the idea of what a letter in Ekaeli would look like just for the heck of it. I do have the script invented. Heh.
This hopefully will clear up some of the mess in ‘Satisfaction’. If not, I’ll go to further lengths on that, and hope that this at least clears up some of Ariane’s personality glitchs. Forgive any spelling errors. Ariane was too lazy today to let me spell check her work.
The last letter posted inspired yesterday’s scene, which may now have to be posted. Heh.
I’m writing to you, myself, because I can understand your motives. Unlike the others I would speak to, you’re actively in my mind, screaming at me and throwing things I know aren’t my own into my train of thoughts. I’d really appreciate it if you’d just stuff it, sometimes, and let me think.
As my mind’s already in enough chaos, I really can’t handle you throwing annoying questions at me. All right?
In all sincerity,
I know you’re dead, so you’ll never read this. It’s perhaps for the better. Yet you too become a target of my aimless letter writing, the pen that slides across the page and bringing inky trails. I do miss you, truly. You existed in my life at a time where I was satisfied. Though alienated by time and struggles from one I loved, you were there with your ego and blue hair to place a spark of general cheer in my life.
I think you would’ve liked Tiana.
I’d like to think that you would’ve lived. I’d like to think that you somehow survived the Shadow Realms and found some short girl with pointy ears who cared about the Jedi, and hid you behind her back. I’d like to think that while I was there, you were one of the faces in the street that I passed day by day, and never knew about.
I’d like to think that before you died you realized just how much I cared for you. You were a son to me, the child I never got to raise. And a friend as well, as unlikely as that seemed. From the day I originally met you, Padawan, you had this gleam to you, this expression so very like my own.
Of all the people I knew then, I believe I understood you the best.
I could talk to you, about nearly anything, you see. Sure, you didn’t understand half of my aimless speech, but you listened to me even when I wasn’t trying to teach you. And you grew up in the Force faster than I would’ve suspected. All in all, I lost my ability to teach you anything new in only a couple years. The only reason we carried on was because we both learned from the experience.
I suspect that’s why the training system works as it does. Because both the Master and the apprentice learn from the making.
Had you survived the Shadow Realms, I would’ve seen to your Knighting. You were too mature, too wise, too… able… to remain a Padawan learner any longer.
There was little more I could have taught you of the Jedi way. For it was that way upon which I fell. You’re a Jedi Knight, Xendor. More of one than I ever would’ve been.
But the Order means little to me in the face of the truth.
May Eru be with you,
((The following letter is to indicate Ariane’s mental condition at the moment. It was wrote after the scene with Elachi’s mind, though I had previously been working on what her mind looked like as it was. But I felt I needed to use a letter to discribe it in full, without graphics. It’s mainly to indicate the complete opposite nature… orderly method acting vs a tumbled creation of building blocks. This letter probably completely discribes Ariane to the fullest I can ever get, if you can read the metaphors.))
Dear darkside Ariane, whom I shall affectionately dub Caie Enaria,
You probably ask why I renamed you. It is because that side of me is not Ariane. Ariane is the self that live now, and that lived then. You are not Ariane, no matter how you try to claim it. You are just another person in my mind that’s tried to tear apart what I’ve built up over the years.
This is what my mind looks like, Caie.
First you pass the shielding, and the years of carefully worked walls to keep others out. There is a door, an oaken door, within this wall. It has a brass knob, and hardly worn down from lack of use, and the hinges and rusted nearly shut. There are a few scars on this door, but it’s been forced part of the way open. Just enough to allow a crack of light into my inner self, escaping through a pencil, an ink pen, and watercolored pages. To pass this would be a feat I don’t know if any being could manage, for the turmoil outside of it.
Past these walls is my home. There are trees there, and a small village, so much of what it once was now rubble. The ruins of time and strife have cast down nearly all of the walls, littering the rusty ground with carnage. The remaining houses within are scarred by fire and water and roaring winds. The earth itself screams for a release.
And the fire was caused from my own strikes in an attempt to rid myself of what I built up.
To take a closer look, everything seems to be built from little building blocks. Take one foundation piece away, and the entire building will collapse into the trees that have grown in around my mental village. And there’s been too many close calls. I protect what remains with a vehement passion for survival, even if it means locking my doors again. But that’s what you want. Me to be locked in here with you.
To look through the trees, there is another house. That’s your house. It’s open, ready to be unleashed, and ready to knock down the village that is Ariane. Ready to destroy the personalities and emotions that live there, and fight to let themselves show.
The village has been rebuilt several times, the scarred doors repainted and the sidewalks swept. The people there try to deny what’s happening to them, that everything there is falling apart from lack of order. Instead they deny it, making their doors shine and stand out when their foundations are falling apart. They try to show what they once were, but inside they’re crumbling from a steady attack by the inside source that is you, Caie.
I want you to leave. You’re destroying my home, my safety. But nor do I want you outside of my shields. Outside is a sea of shadows and tears, that tosses in the endless winds. Outside is a storm, and it only barely peeks into my walled off village of scorn. Outside is where my control lies, though my heart lies at the village that you batter, in keeping it looking cheerful until it finally breaks.
I want you to go away, Caie. I want you to lock yourself into your cottage in the woods and close your eyes to sleep forever.
I want to be able to think.
In all sincerity and possible insanity,
Your controller to the shadow,
You created me. I am you. But I’ve grown too much of that heart, your “village” for you to destroy.
I exist, somewhere.
But you can’t destroy me on your own.
P.S.: I get my new name perfectly well, thank you. Caie means alien in Ekaeli, and Enaria is Ariane nearly spelt backwards.
I hate to desturb you from your continual need to react through my voicebox, but it’s dreadfully annoying at times that you insist on having me stand out in the crowd. I am aware that my height makes me annoyingly unnoticable, but I believe you’ve been annoying my husband by overuse.
I’d still love to have you come around, but could you please tone it down a bit? I know you have to exist to keep the fascade of what I am within, but I’d really like it if you’d let me talk quietly on occasion.
P.S: If you could have a talk with your co-worker, Sentimental, and ask her to bother someone else for a time? Perhaps Meqime?
I’m dreadfully sorry that you were offended by my previous request through your co-author, but I don’t particularally appreciate the revenge you took. Could you please lessen your grip of my existance now that you’ve received just appologies?
Yes, dear. For that you are to me. You’ll never read this… Force, you probably can’t even read the langauge I write in. That’s possibly my intent. If no one can read this, I won’t have to regret being sentimental. I won’t have to regret scribbling down what hits my heart.
I learned to do this on Terra. To write to people with no intent of them reading it. To write out prayers, to write out what I wish. At one time I did this through painting, but at the moment., I write. I’m just a hopeless romanatic at heart, sentimental. I can’t ever understand your logic. It iludes me. I couldn’t ever try to tell that to you, of course. You wouldn’t understand. Though perhaps I miss some things.
Do you care? Do you regret falling in love with me, so many years ago now? Do you hate what you let yourself fall into?
I don’t. I don’t think you can understand my logic. I don’t really have any, honestly. I don’t try to make sense. It’s never been in my personality to try to be an understandable being anyway… I’m only Ariane. Though what Ariane is is something I have yet to learn. I don’t know what she clings to any longer, bar perhaps little fragments of her past that I can’t let go of. I would, if I could. But I can’t. In the same way that I can’t let go of my sentiments, my desires to grow, my melodrama. In the same way I couldn’t let go of love.
I did love you, back then on Myrkr. It was just burried. So far, so deep… it cuts to remember. I’ve been cut, destroyed by that. I can’t even think the way I once did.
I can’t understand you at all. I don’t know whether you love me anymore. I don’t know if you care anymore now then you did then. Perhaps I overwhelm you in the way I am, and perhaps it’s just my mind acting up again.
I fell in love once before. Nothing occured from that… we both couldn’t let anything happen. Nothing did. I had thought you were dead. Perhaps it seems like nothing, that it would’ve happened so briefly, but the person I had made myself into then was so dark that to fall into that current for even a brief time… no. It’s a scar I needed to receive, and can’t let go of anymore. I don’t know why.
It’s not that I don’t love you… I do. I don’t think you really can see this, and I’m afraid to show it. So often now I feel alienated for my emotions, my reactions. I’m afraid that if I let myself react the way I once would be, I’ll be sundered again. I need to break, and I’ve locked all those emotions into a little closet in the shell that makes up me. I don’t know what you think, what you see of me anymore. I don’t know why you even try to tolerate me.
But I do love you. You’ll never read this, unless fate decides to be cruel. But I have to put it somewhere. There never was a time that I didn’t, even if it was burried under a massive pile of metaphorical silt. It might’ve taken a river to wash it away, but it was there. Even during my darkest times within the Realms.
I just wish, somehow, I could find a way to unmask it without destroying this tenative house we’ve rebuilt. I’m fragile and I need to shatter, but will shattering break my spirit now?
I just want to cry, to scream, to weep.
I just want to put it out somewhere beyond words that I haven’t changed.
In all sincerity,
When life contains no satisfaction,
All there’s left to scream.
And then there comes a chained reaction,
And of your life a shadow theme.
You walk your mental passageways,
Empty, hollow screams of death.
And what’s left of you is all delays,
Keeping your heart from death.
Yet in this life you hardly live
When chains of darkness pin you down.
Yourself you have yet to forgive,
To pass your stoic face and lose that frown.
You can’t forgive yourself for screaming,
For locking yourself in inky black.
In this path you’re only dreaming,
That your steely mask can crack.
Still you carry on unsatisfied,
Through dark and misted traits of woe
Your acceptance of life is falsified,
If you don’t snow you’re gonna go…
You’re not satisfied with life.
Break the steel, this iron chain…
Be satisfied outside of strife.
August 6, 2005
Jandalf wrote a poem for me about her role-playing characters and identity that is absolutely stunning! I love it, especially because it relates to some of the scenes I have watched, read and written about already! I think this might go in the preface of my book because it touches on many of the arguments I am making.
When we parade in other clothes
And go about to strike a pose
In literature or interview
Or even lines of fancy prose
It makes me wonder if we see
What we were always meant to be
In all these characters accrued
And scenes of pain that set us free
But keep us trapped, though, in their way
Prisoners to things cliché
Or something of another sort
When identity skews off, astray
They all split off from who we are
And we in turn will find a scar
For when we jest or jab or sport
We are the characters we mar
And so in turn, on us it falls
And as we wander down these halls
That we have made to house them in
Their darkness comes and tugs and calls
It seeks to lure us back away
From trappings of our everyday
But what we find once we’re within
Holds reality at bay
It brings a lie, or what is true
What it brings is up to you
We decide with every line
Who may live and who is through
And so now, as some still mourn
While others wander under scorn
Some evade the dread design
And all the rest will walk forlorn
We are their owners, Fates, and lords
And so we write our own rewards
Even dreaming in our sleep
Of what such musing may afford.
We’ve found our niche and carved it deep.
What is left now, but to reap?
(Jandalf the Orange, August 2005)
How exciting! I should be finished my first draft in a few weeks time… *crosses fingers hopefully*