Friday, January 16, 2009

from Audre Lorde's Sister Outsider

from "Poetry is not a Luxury"

For women, then, poetry is not a luxury. It is a vital necessity of our existence. It forms the quality of the light within which we predicate our hopes and dreams toward survival and change, first made into language, then into idea, then into more tangible action. Poetry is the way we help give name to the nameless so it can be thought. The farthest horizons of our hopes and fears are cobbled by our poems, carved from the rock experiences of our daily lives.

Poetry is not only dream and vision; it is the skeleton architecture of our lives. It lays the foundations for a future of change, a bridge across our fears of what has never been before.

For there are no new ideas. There are only new ways of making them felt--of examining what those ideas feel like being lived on Sunday morning at 7am, after brunch, during wild love, making war, giving birth, mourning our dead--while we suffer the old longings, battle the old warnings and fears of being silent and impotent and alone, while we taste new possibilities and strengths.

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