Community of Gardens

Part of the Blogging Futures course blogchain. Feel free to participate!

The garden metaphor is a compelling vision for what a blog can be. It implies that our thoughts can grow over time with the right kind of nurturing care. I see people across the web nurturing these kind of thought gardens with their blogs and wikis.

But sometimes it feels as though these gardens are enclosed. Sure, a blog might allow comments, but this feels as though we are operating on a layer above the soil. Are others planting anything new, tending to the weeds in our garden, or are they talking to us from the fence that separates our garden from them? Sure, nice conversations can come from that, but all I can think of is the line in Robert Frost's “The Mending Wall”:

Good fences make good neighbors.

When the fences define the interaction we have, then how can we say we are good neighbors, let alone friends? What if we flipped the quote entirely?

Good neighbors make good fences.

A good neighbor would at least add a swinging gate to her fence, allowing neighbors to enter and leave. And if everyone's garden had such doorways, a community of gardens could start taking place.

But what do those doorways look like for blogs? What does it mean for others to contribute to our blogs? What could that look like?