As a child, I walked a narrow line that doesn't exist anymore.
I never knew the glow of an iPhone, as a child. Reading and outside adventures were the most fun you could have until the Gameboy landed when I was eight. Facebook and YouTube were founded just in time for middle school. The first iPhone came out freshman year of high school. Twitter joined, then in college, Snapchat and Instagram.
People my age entered their most social years of development just as revolutionary social tools were released. We are the oldest people who had social media as teenagers. The pioneers.
The view from this tightrope is intense. I can still see the old world, so tantalizingly close in my memory. I wish it were a place I could go to. But it's not a deserted island that I want—it's a city where people pay attention.
Begun in 2011, "I Am Saved" reflects on this rare childhood that had just come into focus. As teenagers grounded in reality, we had approached Facebook as a tool to be used, a game.
But the older we got, the less kids seemed to remember that basic truth, a truth taught in cozy couches with parents, on beach runs with family dogs, and dark trespasses with friends: the internet isn't real.
So there I was, pushing twenty, with only my poems against the rising market value of social companies. The companies took off because it's human nature to sort, categorize, and define. To collect and save ourselves. As I wrote in 2011,
These are the mortal hopes,
Which ask our bodies not to lose a drop of us.
These are the reminders,
Wonderful as all the stars of day,
Which blind us from the sky down.
I'm saying, in so many words, that human minds are only so big. Place the sun in front of us, and we cannot see the stars. With that in mind....
I think I'll take the poem, please.