Is it Art?

When I first decided to write and publish fiction, I thought that I’d spend some time writing poetry. The idea was that writing poetry would be good practice for producing concise and powerful prose. I’ve since stopped writing poetry, though I still indulge the habit from time to time, in trying my hand at songwriting. It’s what I do to relax. But during the year or so of my poetic career, I contemplated the question in the title of this post. Today I read an article that raised the question to new prominence in my mind. You can read the piece here.

For me the question is about intent and artistic responsibility. For me, what I do is Art and it carries the responsibility to engage humanity, my fellows, my brothers, sisters, fathers, mothers, children, all — in a shared conversation that affirms the love we bear for each other and directs our attention to the struggles we must engage.

Here then, is a poem I wrote a couple of years ago when the Doomsday Clock was set at three minutes to midnight. It’s moved a bit closer since Trump claimed the White House.

Three Minutes

Waiting for this thick night’s yielding
to a thinning dawn. Listening
to the passing beat
of dreamtime’s slow hours.
It’s coming. Creaking
bones stirring
ending, beginning.
In the pale sweep of History
memories linger.
Past midnight, nothing
escapes the hot flash.
There, unknown dead,
grim shadows on once walls
carbonized remains
black images in the light.
The light, the light that burns the soul
to ashes, to dust, to vapors
till mortal conscience
screams in pain. Horror!
resonating through folds of time
screaming its demands
the washing of hands.
Do not speak of Hiroshima.
Do not mention Nagasaki.
But it is still three
minutes to midnight.

About neiladaniel

Self published writer of sci-fi, fantasy, poetry, so far.
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