Art: A Soapbox Speech

The hand of the bard has withered,
The pen has been laid aside.
The door to Faery is closing,
And dreamer's dreams have died.
Music has fallen silent,
And magic is gone from our shores.
Genius is wrapped in mourning
As she paces the corridors.
Paces the hallways of legend,
Where man, in inspired prime,
Wrought at the gossamer webbings
Of story and song and rhyme.

Grey is the rain on the tombstones,
Mingling with my tears
As I lament the passing
Of more enlightened years.
Heavy my heart within me,
For the lovelier things have fled,
Leaving me to a harsher world
And a place amongst the dead.

Copyright 2011 by The Aspiring Bard

Warning: I am preparing to clamber up onto my soapbox. If you don't like my soapbox speeches, turn back now.

I was once Googling get-to-know-you questions, and came across this one: What is your favorite type of art? Why? I had to think about that one for awhile. I am a rather artsy individual. I like all types of art, and have respect even for the bits of art I do not like. But as I reflect on the art that means the most to me, I have come to the realization that my answer to the above question should be this: Any kind of art that teaches you something worth knowing, and encourages you to think. Be it writing, painting, or music, art should help you learn something about yourself, God, or the world around you.

It seems to me that this quality is missing from many modern art forms. Art seems to have been relegated to the much less worthy cause of giving people a temporary pleasure, instead of challenging us to think. Many of the newer forms are appealing, but have a frothy and shallow feel. They leave me dissatisfied, wishing there were more.

I can not help feeling that this is a direct result of the direction our society is heading. Morals are 'old fashioned', virtues are unceremoniously defenestrated (yep, I love that word!), and deep thought is lost in the hurly-burly of everyday insanity. People do not want to be challenged or confronted. They are, perhaps, afraid of finding out the emptiness of their own lifestyle. Afraid to discover that the poor, pale, spiritless things presented to them as 'art' are not really worthy of the name. But what would happen if they were shown real meaning, real depth? Would they recognize it? Would they turn away, disquieted? Or would they welcome and embrace its solid genuineness? I suppose there is only one way of finding out.


  1. This is really thought provoking for me, i didn't grow up in a place that had or inspired a lot of art of any kind, so i'm just now starting to discover all the differeent forms of art out there. i do agree that you should learn something from art, but i also feel, same as you, that the learning aspect is very much lacking from most of today's art. Thanks for this Janie! i really enjoyed it!


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