Smorgasboard of Virtual Immortality

Though I would like to imagine my election last night to the post of Poet Laureate of the Blogosphere is due to my incredible blogging skills, I certainly must acknowledge that if one considers the other nominees (as well as many who weren’t on the list), it becomes clear that my election was, at least in part, a popularity contest, as Billy, the Blogging Poet and election founder himself notes in his congratulatory remarks here. There are blogs out there that provide so much more poetry-worthy information and enthusiasm that, well, just check out the blog roll to your right and find that I am far from alone or superior in my promotion of poetry and poetics. Obviously, the election of this position has not been widely spread, since just 872 people voted in total. That said, I vow to send word out and promote the next election, as well as think aloud about the possible responsibilities the title might hold in light of the incredible activities that have and continue to take place at the hands of the former laureates, Jilly Dybka and Ron Silliman.

But now that I have achieved virtual immortality, or mortal virtuality, my first act as laureate is to declare power, as we know it, bankrupt. I realize I am among the choir, but I find it important, especially now, to point a finger at the war the U.S. began, and maintains at extreme cost, on false pretenses and without the support of the countries seated at the United Nations’ table, since we are nearing a voting period. The “Policeman” of the world has ridden its course, and we have to start an articulate buzz about the demise of this kind of brute, money-motivated power – among ourselves — so that we can begin re-building our international diplomacy skills, and most vitality, engage the next generation of U.S. citizens in the process.

I listen to NPR some mornings and report war details, including death tolls, to my students now and then. Once in awhile, a handful will get flustered and demand to know why “we didn’t know these details before,” especially in relation to the genesis of the war. These outbursts are common enough that I think, If just a few more adults were talking to young adults about the specificities and the perils the war will provide for their futures, maybe these Millennials won’t be so easily media-duped once they truly become the voting majority.

An indicator of such change has appeared in the form of one Governor Spitzer, coincidentally, today. Generation Y (or the Millennials) are known for their socially-conscious interests, which bodes well for Spitzer’s proposed legislation in the last 24 hours, which includes civil marriage equality, election law reforms, and a fundamental right to privacy for women. Spitzer is following through with his campaign promises, “because it’s a statement of principle that I believe in, and I want to begin that dynamic.”

In one fell swoop, Spitzer has shown why the last guy lost his state seat (and receives my cheers in the process). He is doing what any good politician in this stage of the game should do: he has noticed this very large young generation of up and comings, along with their sympathetic parents who are persuaded by their “live and let live” attitudes, and has begun cultivating a socially-conscious history devoted to egalitarian principles that may one day win him a presidency. The old conservatives of stalwart religiosity will fall away if they carry on with their proclamations; this generation is not swayed by threats of hell, impositions on their beliefs, and demands that they behave according to a higher authority.

Related to the above news but on a personal note and in line with the smorgasbord title, I would now like to call attention to some hypocrisy related to myself, though I fear me and my colleagues here at NCC are not alone in the campaign against it. In a world where such conservative companies as Morgan Stanley, Wal Mart, American Express, Motorola, etc. provide domestic partnership benefits to their employees, how can I acknowledge that in the supposed bastion of liberalism, academia, I do not benefit from the same basic allowances provided to my married co-workers? Acknowledge and publicly protest I must, especially since I haven’t been as active as I’d like in the efforts so many on my campus are in engaged in, demanding civil rights for all – thanks especially to Elizabeth Wood for maintaining this blog about Nassau Community College’s battle for those rights!

Last but not least, I must adamantly thank Robin Reagler for nominating me, the other bloggers whose good company I enjoy, and those of you who voted for this poet. I hope to live up to the title, or at least, find a way to fill the shoes with each of you now and then!

p.s. Post on a poet coming soon …

15 Responses to “Smorgasboard of Virtual Immortality”

  1. kathryn l. pringle Says:
    April 30th, 2007 at 10:17 pm efinally. someone i voted for wins.
  2. Robert Says:
    April 30th, 2007 at 11:20 pm eCongrats, Amy.
  3. Timothy Caldwell Says:
    April 30th, 2007 at 11:26 pm eI second that…I cannot remember the last time I voted for something and I was with the winning ticket. Congratulations, Amy King Poet Laureate of the Blogosphere. (If ever there was a word that was not poetic, blogosphere is it.) You do realize that now that King is, uh, Queen (?), everybody will be gunning for you.

    It can be lonely way up there…look down on the rest of us with mercy and grace.

  4. Dustin Brookshire Says:
    May 1st, 2007 at 1:35 am eCONGRATS on the win!
  5. Kate Evans Says:
    May 1st, 2007 at 2:43 am eCongratulations on being popular!

    Because you won, I found you. So connections are to be made via your new title.

    I teach creative writing but also comp–and I just taught Riverbend’s book based on her blog (http://riverbendblog.blogspot.com) in my comp class as a way to talk about the Iraq War. It completely opened many of their eyes about the reality that war = people being killed, and Iraqis = human beings who are suffering.

  6. evie Says:
    May 1st, 2007 at 2:50 am ewoooo-hooooo!!!!! congrats, p.l.b.!!! i’m happy to say i voted for you! i look forward to a great year of poetry (and stuff) on your blog. if you at least do more with your platform than gluck did with hers (not hard), i’ll be pleased… : )

    peace.

  7. Sherry Says:
    May 1st, 2007 at 2:47 pm eCongratulations from me, too. Very nice inaugural speech. I’m with you.

    Peace.

  8. Alexander Dickow Says:
    May 1st, 2007 at 2:51 pm eTres bien, Amy, tres bien. Toutes mes felicitations…et bravo pour le commentaire politique….
    A bientot,
    Alex
  9. Sherry Chandler » It’s May Day Says:
    May 1st, 2007 at 5:14 pm e[…] To commemorate that event, I give you words from the inaugural address of our new Poet Laureate of the Blogosphere: But now that I have achieved virtual immortality, or mortal virtuality, my first act as laureate is to declare power, as we know it, bankrupt. I realize I am among the choir, but I find it important, especially now, to point a finger at the war the U.S. began, and maintains at extreme cost, on false pretenses and without the support of the countries seated at the United Nations’ table, since we are nearing a voting period. The “Policeman” of the world has ridden its course, and we have to start an articulate buzz about the demise of this kind of brute, money-motivated power – among ourselves — so that we can begin re-building our international diplomacy skills, and most vitality, engage the next generation of U.S. citizens in the process. […]
  10. ashok Says:
    May 1st, 2007 at 9:29 pm eCongratulations, it was a hard-fought election, and I think all of us learned a lot about the other candidates and points of view and have come out for the better because of it.

    And yeah, it does feel good to vote for a winner )

  11. The Daily Haiku, and the New Poet Laureate of the Blogosphere « Says:
    May 2nd, 2007 at 5:24 pm e[…] Amy King has been elected the third Poet Laureate of the Blogosphere. I have to admit that I don’t care for sentences like this: “this generation is not swayed by threats of hell, impositions on their beliefs, and demands that they behave according to a higher authority” (lifted from its context in her acceptance or inaugural post, or whatever you want to call it, here) […]
  12. Collin Says:
    May 2nd, 2007 at 7:23 pm eGreat acceptance speech, Amy!
  13. Amy King Says:
    May 2nd, 2007 at 8:37 pm eThanks very kindly to each of you — I’m shooting for American Idol next, and I hope you’ll be there to back me on that one too. With my voice, I will certainly need such excellent support, so really, I am very greatful for each of your votes of confidence … I feel like a winner just for that alone!
  14. Lee H. Says:
    May 4th, 2007 at 4:39 am econgratulations, amy! well-deserved.
  15. Margaret Ruth Says:
    May 5th, 2007 at 4:02 pm eWell you know, as I was on the USS Trent, evacuating from the Port de Beyruth….I was speaking to a spry group of young men enlisted in the US Armed Forces.
    Brilliant group of kids you know…bright eyed and so eager to do something nice for the refugees. They were trying to console us and one of them said to me, “At least you are going to a place where there is no war.”

    And I said to him, “You (America) are at war in your heads!”

    When we landed in Newark (a place I never hope to return to) we were confronted with truly paranoid people, people who wanted to flee the US themselves (a ticketing agent), a baggage checker who said that they (as in “she”) “knew things we didn’t know” (about all the terrorist threats)….I was, so to speak, SCARED OUT OF MY WITS of America. And gosh, I’m an American!

    Truly.

    The war between the muslims is a legitimate war you know and as a muslim who knows pretty much the whole story behind it all….well….Allah knows all about the whole darn thing. Allah didn’t write this grand epic drama and portray himself as the loser. Good will prevail but the time between the onset of such things and the end of such things (wars) can be a real heartache to us ALL, regardless of our skin color, the side we have chosen or our actual participation in it. We call it a “fitna” in Islamese. And this is a great big one but it is true that Allah wanted to get the attention of everyone. And Allah has but it seems that it is time to settle the score and we don’t have a whole lot of control over it.

    My advice is to be kind. Just try to be as kind as you can. Give charity, as much as you are able and take care of your:

    1. Parents
    2. Your family
    3. The orphan
    4. The wayfarer
    (in that EXACT order)

    And say your prayers. Learn some if you don’t know any and Allah will take care of the bad guys. Allah is much better at that sort of thing than most of us are.

    Good luck to you and salaams.

3 thoughts on “Smorgasboard of Virtual Immortality

  1. I wonder if you would be kind enough to consider becoming one of our ‘1001 bloggers’ at http://mencap.wordpress.com

    My apologies if I’ve asked you this before. Through the site we are hoping to link 1001 people who blog regularly and I picked up your blog through the ‘blogosphere’ tag on the wordpress homepage.

    Please take a look and consider joining. Let me know what you think.

    Do email me at david [at] theheads.co.uk if you would like to know more. If you can link to the site or forward this message to others I’d be very grateful.

    Kind regards

    David
    david [at] theheads.co.uk

  2. Paul,

    This is an old post – I was the 2007 Poet Laureate of the Blogosphere, and my “reign” is about to end. They will be accepting nominations for 2008 starting on April 1st — http://bloggingpoet.squarespace.com/bloggingpoetcom/nominations-to-begin-for-2008-poet-laureate-of-the-blogosphe.html

    I’m simply transferring my old blog – by hand – to this new blog, thanks to a recent bout of “Badware”, among other reasons.

    Thank you for your note!

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