Sunday, February 10, 2019

us and the arts

the arts

the arts can be denied,
when schools have to cut expenses,

academics are hard to deny,
for reading, writing, math, science,
social studies, languages,
shout of their value,
the kinesthetic, if expressed as sports,
opens purses, but expressed as art, as dance,
can be denied,

what seems true to me is
that a school’s most important task
is to help each young person learn to believe in self,
to hit the “on” switch that doubt and frustration can gum up,

this week near half of our middle school
are pulling off a musical in our new Performing Arts Center,
there is a wholeness, a life, that comes real on stage:
as actor, set designer, costumer, makeup artist, prop maker, all excel,
light and sound people, stage managers,
all together pull off what needs doing
so that each individual can shine bright
within a whole that shines bright,

the closest analogy to me is a team in sports,
where the collective, acting together,
somehow reveals individuality,
the sense of self as part of a larger whole,

the arts are one way to help empower the student,
we teachers, we advisors, work all the time
to do our best for the empowerment of the young person,
this week, the arts shout of how well
a full-scale musical can blaze of empowerment,

it is hard to sacrifice part of one’s own journey with kids
to enable another’s journey,
but of such is how a community does its best to stumble forward.

by Henry H. Walker
February 2, ‘19

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