Posted in Leaves on the Poet Tree (Poems)

Detente of Discomfort

this world of love hate
a presence on the web
leads to reconnections
with old friends
affirmations of life events
and yet tis so easy to
forget the one necessary
to become distracted
to lose oneself to the
fear of hacking
(a strange word, so like a bad cough when you think about it, disease?)
to join the endless narcissism

i go back and forth
to keep or delete my account
that is the question
and others
to remove myself
from it all and return to what was before
would i miss it?
is my life so much
better now?
or have i merely succumbed
to the virtual voices crying out
when what i really need
who i need to connect
is the one of flesh and blood right here
before me?

for now it is enough
to keep these questions
ever before me lest
i forget who i was
the days before i
was snared by the web
trembling here with
the myriad connections
in a kind of
detente of

Posted in Musings and Reflections

From Facebook to Amazon, these are the default privacy settings you should change – The Washington Post

Hi folks,

This is a pretty important (and kind of scary) article on protecting your privacy, and what information/activity is automatically being recorded mostly without our knowledge.

I spent today following the recommendations. I suggest you do the same.



It is on days like today that I think I love you,
if I relax and let the wind
blow through me and the sun warm my skin.

Mother Earth breathes around me:
in the rustling of the leaves,
in the soft cry of a songbird,
in the mesh and mix of music
from the buildings around me;
screaming children,
wind chimes,
Latin and Jazz,
lost in the rumbling of a passing jet.

In the smell of sweet potato biscuits
baking in the oven, brought to me by
this gentle breath, I, swaying,
cradled in strings and wind,
suspended between a home and a tree.

I close my eyes and open them again to
blue sky, white clouds, green leaves, and a
yellow sun dying
red with the evening.

I shiver at the thought of night,
a visit from a friend and you.

I marvel again at the sad beauty
of this circle we call home,
death and life,
joy and pain,
so intertwined and woven together
like the threads of this hammock
where I lie caught in the complex and
sacred web of Life.

September 19, 1992

Posted in Longreads and Essays

Hey YOUth! Don’t Be The 21 Percent!

A recent Pew Research study has some alarming statistics about the prevalence of cyber bullying on social networks.

According to the study, 90% of teens say they have witnessed some sort of mean behavior online. Even more disturbing is that roughly one fifth (21%) of those who witnessed bullying said that they had participated in the harassment.

Not all of the study is negative. Those surveyed said that they felt better about themselves and built positive friendships through social networking.

So here are some Groovy recommendations:
For Parents: Have access to your child’s account, either by having your own account on their network or by insisting that you know their password in order for them to have an account. Then you can monitor their behavior as well as protect them from possible bullying. Social networking can be an incredibly rewarding experience for a teen. Our role as parents is to monitor that experience so that it can continue to be so.

For Youth: Don’t be the 21% who participate in cyber bullying. If you see it happening, be a different voice. Cultivate a kind and gentle persona online.

YOUth (and all of us) should be practitioners of virtual nonviolence.

The link to article on the study is below: