For nine months, I attempted pressing reset on my resolve for social interaction online. When I unable to push my business any further without it, I returned not only to Instagram, but Twitter and Facebook. Both Twitter and Facebook required a true reset of my account; there was nothing to resume or refresh. I had to start from scratch. After this amount of time, Twitter is by far the hardest environment to recreate. Informally known as the “hate app,” our controversial little birdhouse is where the… let’s say “truest” essences of users are magnified.
It isn’t all bad, of course. It just is not formulated to focus purely on the positive or appealing. It’s where we go to get personal, get real, and get used to making it feel like a soundbite amongst so many identically formatted blurbs. It feels so comfortable that we almost feel cloaked. Or maybe a more accurate descriptor is “free.”
When we started our journeys, every last one of us began chronicling our lives in play-by-play format. That’s how MySpace and Facebook trained us to understand a text post. “What are you doing?” “How are you feeling?” Twitter, however asks, “What’s happening?” In the creation phase of each tweet, the interface beckons a wider perspective and in turn suggests the attention of other users isn’t so keenly focused on the I. You’re free from introspection by design.
If every kid is thinking of their own outfit on the first day of school, it means no one is looking at your outfit. That’s what Twitter whispers into our ears before we walk into class and a twit pic of said outfit garnishes 87,000 likes with the caption “What are thooooooose? SMH” But by then it is too late to turn around and we are hooked. Even when it hurts.
This effect is also a fraction of what turned the platform into a news hub. Realtime. All the time. That was and is the key.
Leaving, then, for nine months is like missing a lifetime of thought. Shortly after returning, you’d eventually find yourself unable to reconnect with suspended accounts of those you grew to love. I never felt embarrassed following anyone that others hated. I never felt afraid I’d be persecuted for what I read. I never held my tongue. I never had a split-second thought about how my content would affect my life off of the platform.
I never shared my name.
“But by then it is too late to turn around and we are hooked. Even when it hurts.”
When I got back last month, I went searching frantically and joylessly for mutual followers of my most cherished accounts. I attempted pinpointing similar accounts by combing through buzzwords and statements I thought they would publish in their own voice. I’ll save my thoughts on the the superior aspects of Twitter compared to other social platforms. For now, I will simply say the search tool is a giant in this space.
I found that long-lost account I pined for. It had been suspended with three others popping up soon-after. All ending in suspension. I should let you know an actual tear of frustration coated my eyeball and I was intent on keeping it from falling. Seriously, though! I had spent time hunting down accounts in a stage of my Twitter infancy that was supposed to suggest endless possibilities. So what drove me to this place?
Specificity drove me here and sped off with my belongings still in the car. Specificity of content I found on my feed and of the ones I followed.
What I found appalling, they’d already expressed distaste in. What I found inspiring, they’d already presented a twelve-tweet how-to guide for. Subjects that had me in stitches, I found gif reaction tweets for on their feed.
We have a difficult time making friends of others with whom we agree on nearly everything. It would be difficult finding them, quite strange and uncomfortable wanting to make them our friends based solely on that, even unlikely that they’ll automatically want to make those friendships just as much. I argue it should be difficult not only because it’s unnatural, but also because it can be dangerous seeing our reflection and wanting it to surround us in every way.
Twitter, however, is the exception. Some of us bend to the will of our preferences. The environment is toxic because we like it that way.
If Calypso could keep Odysseus ashoreand stare at oceanic expanses knowing everything before the horizon belonged to her Could clasp her arms around the breastplate of the warrior of the world If Odysseus could gaze at her holding peace at black hole sun, spattered gold in shining shadow and still gaze – If Calypso could imagine… Read more
The scent in those leaves is yours The heat of the tangle we share The hit of this tango we’ve skipped Long lost in the jungle we wait Four limbs to be strangles in “yes” Head light from the toggle and twish I’ve longed to be headstrong and wrong Five eyes to be open and… Read more
What is not gradient?What flow of time isn’t eventual memory loss? What remembrance wasn’t each day feeling the real thing less and less and then transferring sensation into delusional perception—for the sake of not fading? What isn’t gradient?It should not even be a word. What catatonic love wasn’t daily forgetting why anything was worth the… Read more
( This piece was recently published the Hawaii Pacific Review. That enough was reason to open it & I was more than pleasantly surprised❕💬 ) by Hosho McCreesh (from A Deep & Gorgeous Thirst) At the chalet and you’re guzzling down bombers of Farmer beer, and the occasional measure of … A Deep & Gorgeous… Read more
The chosen ones made idols. Statues of gold and genies right below the present, True and Living God. Stay far from gold. Whatever you should decide to arrive in, let it not be gold. Too oft does gold stimulate hungry pupils readied with greedy hearts waiting to make of you a statue and symbol of… Read more
Fall is a lanky hipster. A lanky hipster with a Brooks seat on his bike and a fedora on his head. A fedora on his head and an infinity scarf draped over a perfectly creased American Apparel collared shirt. An American Apparel collared shirt not currently found on Amazon. An original. Cared for and with… Read more
I am the River Moldau collecting beneath crossed ankles. I am the sideways push to get out from your path. I am you, stained grey-air ash. I am warmest French bread and condensation on the plate. Me and the droplets waiting for spreadable Everything’s Better Butter.
from “DIY. Postcards as a way to promote your literary works” — https://kadr.vip/alex-markovich-marketing-tips What a lovely idea that captures the ephemeral nature and resilience of literature. Keeping this written word airy, kinetic, and also tangible! Will give it a go! “…literary postcards where I place abstracts from my stories. … Where do I send these… Read more
I melt right down to sticky glaze thinking those sweet cherubs had to be consoled of me. Seeing those faces in the yearbooks past, I wonder if I’ve done my job well enough. Old friends I’ve tormented tell me it made them stronger — made the smiles afterward longer lasting. Over the years, these dear… Read more
In bed without solace of restEach sand of the day falling In poring over the text of ages. Like bed-light under comforterMany moons ago. Still a similar warmth of spiritAnd text of ages in hand: A letter. From father to long lost loveNot mother. Proof of an everlasting trial. Secrecy by the fault linesWhich brought forth deathIn the form of children. A… Read more
By Gabrielle Pearson For nine months, I attempted pressing reset on my resolve for social interaction online. When I unable to push my business any further without it, I returned not only to Instagram, but Twitter and Facebook. Both Twitter and Facebook required a true reset of my account; there was nothing to resume or… Read more
Some have never counted down, onlycounted up Counting up:what is done when teasing toleranceand testing patience From one and three and twenty-ninethey, desperate to be stopped Proven wrong Relieved are those who dependon counting down. Basking in surety and an end. Promised and provided. From twelve to six to one.
Key click and key click And decline with surety this and the next also “Could these pieces be any more hollow?” “These aren’t writers. These are twenty-something-aged children” So the poems and the flash fiction and the creative nonfiction are sophomoric So I begin hating my job as an editor This publication is small so… Read more
I feel so very sad today Like lakeside in a post-drowning exacerbated exhale Today I am unwoven, unraveled, revealed, bare, raw Sticky stuck itchy square centimeters of thick grime-coated, sweat-beading skin Is giving up So very sad? I am pillow side reeking of dry salivary residue And yet not willing to peel To pull away… Read more
We’ve all been there. We spend hours upon hours explaining our stressful days and anxieties to counsellors, professors, parents, and well-meaning friends. We spend so much time explaining how hard it is to conquer that we forget it often takes a lighter touch to alleviate. Of course, not all breakdowns or emotional weights can… Read more
Key click and key click
And decline with surety this and the next also
“Could these pieces be any more hollow?”
“These aren’t writers. These are twenty-something-aged children”
So the poems and the flash fiction and the creative nonfiction are sophomoric
So I begin hating my job as an editor
This publication is small so
Perhaps this explains the mediocre writing
Perhaps this is the “At least I tried” publication
Although, each of these ‘writers’ have given a more honest try than I have lately.
At least they cared to write something.
I feel so very sad today
Like lakeside in a post-drowning exacerbated exhale
Today I am unwoven, unraveled, revealed, bare, raw
Sticky stuck itchy square centimeters of thick grime-coated, sweat-beading skin
Is giving up
So very sad?
I am pillow side reeking of dry salivary residue
And yet not willing to peel
To pull away
At the dawning of eve,
I am still
We spend hours upon hours explaining our stressful days and anxieties to counsellors, professors, parents, and well-meaning friends. We spend so much time explaining how hard it is to conquer that we forget it often takes a lighter touch to alleviate. Of course, not all breakdowns or emotional weights can be solved by a few scrolls past satisfying imagery or a relaxing playlist.
But for when all else has failed, this is my go-to.
Simple images with simple color progression to remind me of minimalism, the comforting way nature returns to a basic equation of gradients, temperature, silence, and storms.
So for when all else has failed for you too–or for when you’d just like to scroll along, fade into some of my favorite Tumblr pages.