I am writing poetry, have all along, but cannot post publicly anymore. This is due to the Trawlers, a group of poets who trawl the Internet looking for snippets to steal, tid bits that can't be traced back their source, inspiration, to keep their blogs going and to keep their accolades coming. I note that not one single one of the Trawlers has congratulated me on getting a chapbook published. It's as if the last thing they want is my work in print. Odd how I feel that way, isn't it.
The only time I've felt 'safe' in the last number of years was if I did, say, a poetry prompt in a poetry community and then received lots of comments, as you do when you participate in these beautiful little communities that pop up and disappear all too soon, as the last one did. Because of the traffic to my site, and that some of the participants also read their blogs, the Trawlers wouldn't sack that poem. They might get caught out. Geez.
Also I wrote a really fine poem a year or two back and never posted it but is is in one of my videopoems, one which has received 2,500 hits in just over a year, and I added it via the Subtitle option in YouTube. The Trawlers are unlikely to touch something that is in video form because, again, in the cross-overs of communities, someone might see my videopoem and then read their rip-off in something they posted on their site and the wires would mesh.
While they all hide behind Oscar Wilde, who said, "Talent borrows, genius steals," Wilde himself was very original as a writer and did not "steal." He was a very witty man. But the plunder of literature his famous comment spawned, now that's a sad thing, it really is.
It's as if people can't be bothered to plunder their own psyches and work at saying what they need to say in their own words - because writing poetry is hard work. Words create the writer and writing is a dangerous act. The Trawlers really don't like to put anything at risk - better to steal from someone who is dying into their writing. Then they can get some depth, something real into their own work, even if by theft, not by the hard work of mining oneself.
Even this post has a few nuggets a couple of the Trawlers would glom onto, I know.
There is no solution to this continued and persuasive problem in the Internet blog world. Incredible poetry is being posted every day around the world in various blogs. And then there are the Trawlers, middling talents who are desperate, who happily grab this and that, mulching it into their own rather poor but self-inflated productions.Talent Borrows, Genius Steals, but it's still Plagiarism on the Net