A new poem…
I’ve noticed something lately
In this crazy world of social media.
We say people are our friends
Simply because we are
On the same webpage
Or talking through tweets
Or liking each other’s pictures.
Maybe it’s just me, but
This isn’t friendship.
I mean, not in the strictest sense of the word.
Friends get together.
They have coffee or lunch
(And they don’t have to show one another pictures of it.)
They talk on the phone
And laugh and share
(Without using emoticons or buttons.)
They know one another’s
Families and friends
(And not just in pictures.)
But, and this is a pretty big but,
There’s a place where the concept of real friendship bleeds over
Into the world of likes and comments and retweets and hashtags.
Where people I’ve never met actually meet a need for community.
Where a post is more than words on a screen.
It’s an encouragement, a glimpse of hope, a lifeline.
From here in my tiny corner of the world I share
My fears, my joys, my woes, my victories.
And from across the globe I hear friendly voices saying,
“Me, too.” Or “Way to go!” Or “Can I help?”
I’ve heard people say that you can’t have online community.
I say they have no idea what they’re missing.
Of course it’s always amazing when I meet a friend
I’ve only ever chatted with through a keyboard.
But that makes them no less dear to me.
So, maybe it’s just me,
But real friendship is about the value placed on the relationship
And not the digital nature of it.
After all, they’re real people.
Why can’t they be real friends?