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Yes, Covid is shutting down the arts

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Something began to wake up when street artists started attracting attention. But put a price on it and slap it on the cover of a magazine and one artist may benefit or a handful of artists, but suddenly everyone wants a piece of the pie and it becomes a genre. The death knell of free expression.

The Russians (especially going back to when they were Soviets ) have a lot they could teach us. Soviet city planning (post WW2) was like our urban-renewal on steroids (all about concrete) and artists were treated as enemies of the state. Poets had to hide their feelings and passions in coded metaphors, which to bureaucrats, might as well have been an exotic foreign language. Poets like Vosnesensky, the ones who didn't defect, filled stadiums. But many had to leave and spent the rest of their days pining for the soulfulness of the Russia they had to abandon.

I think we might be a little spoiled. My point is, what artists are going through with Covid is nothing new. It's always been like this for most of the modern era. The upshot is, we must be resilient and we must speak our truth, and we must stick together if possible because there is not going to be any divine intervention.

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Gary Lindorff is a poet, writer, blogger  and author of several books, the latest: 13 Seeds: Health, Karma and Initiation. Over the last few years he has begun calling himself an activist poet, channeling his activism through poetic (more...)

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