To unplug or not?

Recently on Novelmatters I posted about how much I struggle with the presence and demands of social media. You can read the post here.

But I realized that this has been a problem for me for decades — even before the Internet and cellular phones. Here is a poem I wrote over 25 years ago:


In another time I might have been

A lonely person.  Yearning for the company

Of human voice and thought,

I might have invented reasons

For  why a neighbor, many a country mile away,

Should come to see me, just

To visit, make some jelly, salt a ham,

Boil some lye soap.

We’d share the news the mailman didn’t bring, or forgot;

And part resolved to keep our bonds more firm.

Between our visits, I would save scraps of cloth –

Just any pieces that would make a quilting patch.  And then,

Next time,

I could send her word to come to a quilting bee.

But now I sit, and stand, and work alone.

There are neighbors within fifty feet each way,

And little boxes that need only to be dialed,

Or switched on, to give me the gossip and news

That my mailman, again, didn’t bring;

While bits of conversations that will never be

Lie unnoticed, unused, and separated

In the crazy quilt of my urgent existence.

–Copyright Latayne C Scott

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