"After a long time, he drew her against him and spread the edge of his cloak over her. They lay side by side, barely touching, letting the power of the sun and the earth and the air move through them in harmony and she dropped into a dreamless sleep. "
Thursday, July 22, 2021
she dropped into a dreamless sleep
I answer: I am making art.
"I think it is crucial to be aware of the things that come with intuition, art, poetry, love, and to keep them alive because they don't weigh very much in the balance anymore." Benoit Aquin film artist
I recently completed the audio book How To Write an Autobiographical Novel by Alexander Chee. The last essay was entitled "On Becoming an American Writer" .
Chee teaches creative writing at Dartmouth College and often has to defend the art form to his own students. They ask him "What is the point?" "How can we keep making art in this world?"
Alexander Chee answered his students in this essay. He told them that art dedicated to tenderness is not weak, it is strong. He said that this is the only world we have.
“I wanted to lead my students to another world, one where people value writing and art more than war, and yet I knew and I know that the only thing that matters is to make that world here. There is no other world. This is the only world we have. "
“I needed to teach writing students to hold on—to themselves, to what matters to them, to the present, the past, the future. And to the country. And to do so with what they write. We won't know when the world will end. If it ever does, we will be better served when it does by having done the work we can do.”
“That art -- even, or perhaps especially, art that is dedicated somehow to tenderness, dedicated as a lover who would offer something to her beloved in the last nights they'll share before she leaves this life forever -- is not weak. It is strength.”