Sometimes it pays to be a poet.
Your friendly editor, Thomas (Brady) Graves, is thrilled to announce his invitation to a Romanian literary conference as Scarriet seeks to enlarge its international reputation.
The title of the conference is intriguing, isn’t it?
Because of my curious nature, I cannot help but indulge my fancy on the nature of a secret.
The first observation which came to me was this:
There are secret things which do not want to be secret.
The poet wishes his poems were read.
And things which are not secret, but which do desire secrecy.
A look on one’s face, which to one’s horror, gives it all away.
Further, there are those things which demand secrecy—but which are not secretive things.
We consider it rude to peek at whatever one is writing or reading on their phone—even though what is on their phone is banal and of no import. (Though if we don’t see it, how will we know?)
One wishes to be secretive about what one is texting—despite the fact it is of no consequence.
Or, we might wish to be secretive because it is of no consequence—one always wants to assume one is owed secrecy—and one is polite if we grant them this secrecy, even if it is unnecessary.
Secrecy is powerful, and usually exciting.
Social interaction, then, is not just about communication.
It is about, in a very real sense, manufacturing the necessity of secrecy.
We believe secrecy is good-–and we show this publicly. Secrecy is a virtue, and the polite respect this virtue.
To communicate, we share—and why do we share? To combat secrecy.
The great paradox at the center of all communication: secrecy is continually both our friend and our enemy, changing from one moment to the next.
It is almost like breathing: each instant of our lives, secrecy good, secrecy bad, secrecy good, secrecy bad.
Perhaps this is why they say a secret will always come out.
It will also always go in.
And this ‘breathing’ is further complicated by the fact that secrecy can be superficial and trivial, or it can protect our very being.
They say, “the truth will set you free.” We typically think of knowledge, of information, of revelation, of telling as that which can save us.
And then one thinks of “Prufrock,” and the lines, “I shall tell you all” and the famous rejection: “That is not what I meant at all.” The refusal to accept the telling of all is the ‘civilized’ voice in Eliot’s poem.
As a society: We want there to be secrecy. We want not to know.
And yet—you, you alone who read this—burn to know everything.