Looking at the Web

O the internet never sleeps
Dark web blacker than ocean deeps
With just one mouse click each one leaps

Life’s dramas online are displayed
Decisions are discussed and weighed
Reputations are often flayed
Social media secret keeps

Tender psyche from wounds will cry
Bullies force agony’s loud sigh
The victim sleep and rest deny
The bright glare of the screen eye weeps

Connects to friend and foe alike
Bring comfort or a viper strike
Need to tell bullies “take a hike”
The taunts and threats from keyboard seeps

Someone close to me has been recently bullied online. The bullying was an assault on character, self image and self worth. Of course the anonymity of the internet made it nearly impossible to determine the origin of the posters. However the combined computer prowess of family members ascertained that the posters (unless they are genius computer hackers) were located in New Zealand, France, Belgium, and Germany. Since the young person on the receiving end has never travelled to any of these countries, and has no friends or acquaintances located there made it easier to shrug off the attacks. Sadly it wasn’t until the situation was brought to the parental attention that emotional equilibrium was restored. This event just brought home to me how vulnerable our teens are despite their assertions of independence.

The above poem is a Zejel, a very old Spanish poetic form that is also likely an even older Arabic poetic form with an origination date somewhere between the ninth and eleventh centuries. It has 8 syllables per line and is composed of an initial tercet (3 line stanza) in monorhyme. It is followed by an undefined number of quatrains (4 line stanzas) having a rhyme scheme of: bbbA, cccA, dddA, etc. Thus the first tercet defines the rhyme for the last line of all subsequent stanzas.

31 thoughts on “Looking at the Web

  1. The internet just intensifies the very worst of middle and high school. Too late now to make social media subject to age limitations like drinking or license requirements like driving. (K)

    Like

    1. The internet just made it easier to send the poison pen letter… Human nature is just a wild thing that requires self regulation though we try by imposing societal rules, regulations, ethics, and moral strictures. Somehow putting age restrictions or license requirements on internet usage sounds like an idea some would embrace, malicious behavior is not age linked likewise scofflaws are perpetually among us.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree that many take advantage of the relative anonymity of the internet. But it is just that – relative. Being able to look up the IP addresses after sending a ping makes it possible to find the location of the computer generating the content… it may not identify the individuals but it is possible to get a general idea of the who and where.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh Val, the internet has taken a toll on the lives of so many. ..internet is something that has helped us connect and get through during pandemic and i hope…i just hope people will use it wisely..

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes Mich, the internet is like most anything – it can be used for good or evil. I can’t imagine working in the kitchen without my favorite knife but another might use a knife to threaten or even kill another person… A sad but true state in this world.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Internet has just become a place for every one to vomit out poison. It’s so sad.
    PS :loved what you’ve written and I always get to learn about these poetry styles!

    Like

    1. Thanks Mimu! The internet is only a reflection of the people who use it. I like to think that WP has more good than bad… I hope some of these different poetry styles inspire you to give them a try!!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I wholly agree that the internet has given the younger generations a hard obstacle to manage in their lives. I pray often that they have someone in their lives who can do that kind of thing (find out the origins of sordid messages). It’s really bad if they don’t.

    Like

    1. Our young people are now (and have always been) at emotional risk. I think it comes with the age and the growth of the brain (and independence). As parents we were supposed to steer them in the right direction and provide a safety net both physically and emotionally. Too bad that too many today are without the safety net – and they fall hard.

      Like

  5. Good poem. Unfortunately the internet brings good and bad. Bullying (no matter whether online or not) should never be tolerated. Several years ago, a teen in our area committed suicide b/c of bullying. I believe the bullies should be charged with murder. Just my two cents.

    Like

    1. Our teens are vulnerable and yes there should be a reckoning when bullying results in death. It is a complex subject. As adults we need to monitor what our teens are seeing and doing online but it isn’t always easy as the technology is not always in our hands and under our control… So many questions, many different answers, and tragic outcomes in too many instances.

      Like

  6. That is just maddening that random people in other countries world bully a stranger online. The internet brings us many good and convenient things but it also brings a lot of bad. The poem is very week done. Peace & smiles

    Like

    1. Yes it is sad and strange and scary and often incomprehensible. I wish that bullying didn’t exist online or in person. You know better than almost anyone the damage that can be done to the psyche of young people. Peace and hugs to you! So glad you liked the poem..

      Like

  7. The bullies may very well be bots. Though there is no shortage of disgruntled, angry people, no matter what country comes to mind-bots are more ubiquitous, when it comes to random posts. The other day, I got a call (unanswered) from “Playboy Mansion, Beverly Hills”. It originated, apparently, somewhere in China.

    Like

    1. Perhaps but from the comments it was pretty obvious that they had been reading posts – and not just one that had key words that would trigger a bot post. Plus there were multiple comments and they were not identical in content or tone… the situation has, hopefully, resolved.

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s