War Poet.ca - A CFAP Project by Suzanne Steele

ethics of the war artist (3)

“Poetry is one of the sanctions of life.

Wallace Stevens

(sanction: to grant authority, impart binding force, make sacred.)

a friend sent me this quote. a friend who has been so supportive of me and my work. I like what it’s saying. I like to think that we as poets can make something sacred through our witness.

I see the act of art as sacred. the most important criteria is that the artist must speak her truth and execute it to the best of her ability.

and I see the act of being a warrior as sacred. the most important criteria is that the warrior must act/be his truth and execute it to the best of his ability.

where the artist and the warrior fail or corrupt is when there is no adherence to their truth. when there is either compromise or corruption.

in a week’s time I’ll be meeting my fellow war artists as we gather for the A Brush With War exhibit at the National War Museum in Ottawa. I’m so excited to meet others of my kind. we’re a rare breed in this world. Canada is a leader in her long 90+ year tradition.

I’m anxious to go to the pub afterwards just to share our war stories.

and I’m suspecting that the others will share that connection with the warriors that I experienced. and by the way, not all soldiers are warriors. the true warriors become apparent though. and they’re not always the big, ripped guys. and they’re not the strivers. real warriors have a calling and a discipline and a look in their eye. they move with purpose but with ease.

Lao Tzu’s great book is titled The Art of War. and warriors, true warriors, still study it.

I will be reading at the National War Museum Dec. 11th 2 pm


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The page you're reading contains a single diary entry entitled ethics of the war artist (3). It was posted here on December 05, 2010.

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