Michael Divine

Politic Awareness

In order for me to write poetry that isn’t political
I must listen to the birds
& in order to hear the birds
the airplane must be silent

Marwan Makhoul (trans. Zeina Hashem Beck)
Gaza Poets Society

I am fortunate to live in a time and place that, for me and my station in life, is in relative peace but it is not without being aware of the state of the world – from the localized environs to the bigger sways of peoples and governments.

To really paint the beautiful blue is to know its opposite, orange. To paint the soaring line is to understand the crash and burn, the grief, the heartache. To paint dreams of freedom is to also embrace the travails of despair, the hold in one’s awareness the prisons of the world, and to dream forth brighter futures.

Even looking to the sky we see not only the stars but the drifting satellites of man, beaming our messages to and fro – our kitten videos and text messages, news headlines and stock reports, maps and gps and, well, an endless array of information. To make art is to hold all of it at once and choose the thread of our consciousness which, today, we will explore.

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