Friday, December 28, 2007

ramblings - random rantings

I've been doing a lot of reading on the impact on this collaborative, information, prosumer era which has me grappling with thoughts that plagued me when I starting sharing my words, on stage, on page and onscreen, namely: relevance.

I, like so many (or the few who read these words) of you, blog. I spend time, albeit brief moments, scribbling thoughts, exposing myself for who I truly am and what I really think, but what is the relevance. Why do it? Who am I doing it for? You? Me? We?

As with most things in life, every action brings more questions. Every answer evokes two questions. What confuses me even more is that this action (random rantings online) has no answer. And yet I continue.

Sometimes I write with no purpose just so I can post..... I am of the school that writers should write, exercise that muscle, and, in time, something useful will come out of it.

I'm reading a book called Wikinomics and at the basis of it is the idea of collaboration (in all spheres) being the essence of this evolved information / digital age. I wonder whether through collaboration - my ramblings and your thoughts - I might find sanity.

Just a thought.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

ramblings - looking back

I was recently going through my blog and came to the realisation that it's literally been a year since I posted regularly to this space. And in that time, so much has happened, so much time has passed by.

As a writer and a poet, I'm often asked what advice I would give to other aspiring wordsmiths. Beyond "don't do it, because it can be a loveless path to take, I am a firm believer in "living". Artists can be so self-indulgent, so inward looking. We talk about reflecting, highlighting and engaging with life but spend more time observing it than we do participating - maybe it's just me. But LIVING is a critical part to being able to artistically express and it is important that we embrace ALL aspects of life. We often restrict our engagement with life because we judge it, but that blocks us from experiences that may add value to our craft.

As a poet in Africa, there is much talk about poetry serving as the voice for the voiceless, as a tool for revolution or protest. While this is important, focusing solely on that means one's life is incomplete. What about love? Laughter? Clowning? These are all elements of being human. We are like Shrek, we have layers.

Where am I going with this? I feel I've gone the opposite route, which is a problem in itself. I have been so focused on living that I have neglected my passion, my essence - writing, sharing thought, word.

Hopefully, a year will not pass by again without words in this, the infinite pursuit of perfection.

Just a thought

Monday, December 10, 2007

Re-definition of Self

The Internet, as it re-defines itself, has provided many of us with the opportunity to reach across immense distance to create communities with like-minded people we may never have met in our lifetimes. The advent of collaborative and interactive spaces, like blogs, facebook and MySpace, have created friendships that will last over lifetimes while also allowing many of us to re-establish friendships with those who have moved on.

Sitting in Africa, a continent that has become, again, a cause for the world, I have always tried to keep abreast, as much as I can, of the developments available to us all. I truly believe that the 'Information Age' is the one era in which there opportunity for us, as Africans, to start to level the playing field. This Blog was my first one, which I started as a space to discuss the one thing I am truly passionate about - poetry. Since starting this one, I have also started a poetry blog ( in which I post all my unedited raw poetry, two Myspace pages ( and and a space of Facebook. I also have a random e-newsletter that I send out to a growing list of people, in which I share my thoughts on a range of subjects. (Always worry about whether they are relevant or not)

Anyway, I have discovered that it is easy to caught up in all these things but, over the last few weeks, have started to question the purpose of these spaces, and the countless others I have registered with and never used (and will probably never use coz I can't remember my passwords). In my mind: MySpace is a place for marketing myself as a writer and performer - I have two because I only realised you have to register with My Space Music separately if you want to include music; Facebook is for connecting with friends and I have re-connected with friends I haven't spoken to in over a decade; and, Imperfect Poetry is a self-indulgent experiment driven by a need to share and find relevance in my writing. This space? I don't know. That's what I've been grappling with.

But, I do feel this space is important, especially as my first true step into this new world. So, in an attempt to revive this space, I would like to start including my Ramblings on it. At the same time, if there is anyone who still visits me here, I would like thoughts, ideas, guidance, comments, etc on what you would like to see and hear here from a simple, yet confused African (and European) poet and writer trying to make sense of this crazy reality we reside in.

It's been a while. But I'm still here. Are you?