america · amwriting · beauty · politics · writeyourstory · writing

A Call to Art: Is Art Enough to Save Us?

i don’t write in here because life is busy and i crave the quiet. a solid excuse, as excuses go. but, with Toni Morrison passing and America in an all-out spiritual civil war, I must.

Toni said, “It has to be both: beautiful & political at the same time. I’m not interested in art that is not in the world. And it’s not just the narrative, it’s not just the story; it’s the language & the structure & what’s going on behind it.”

When a tragedy happens like mass shooting in El Paso, Texas, mass shooting in Dayton, Ohio, mass shooting all over America 255 times this year, you doubt art’s place in this world. I see people post statements like, “make art. create beauty. it’s the greatest act of rebellion” and I scoff because tragedy turns art into a luxury. when you fear for your life in public places, when you think ICE is going to capture your friends, your ex, good strangers with young families, a call to art isn’t the first thing on my mind.

but. we’ve tried a call to arms and that ends in killing. we’ve tried a call to anger and that ends in fights. we’ve tried a call to senators and that ends in voicemails. so. what’s left?

when the abortion bans broke out, i said, only art will change this.

people making clever images that speak louder than a woman’s cries.

when two mass shootings happened within one weekend, i did not share the same thought.

maybe art will change us. maybe it will help us rise. right now, it’s questionable.

what do you got? what do you have to say about this? what do you have to make about this?

show me your beauty, your politics.

i want to know if art can save us.

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