Photo Poem: “What Zedong Said…”


Posted by admin | Posted in Arab Dawn, Arab Spring, Artists, Austerity, Credit Crunch, Crisis, Current Affairs, Economic Downturn, Language, People, Photo, Photo Poem, Poem, Poema, Poetry, Protest, Revolt | Posted on 18-07-2011

After watching poem readings by the great modern poets Billy Collins and Carol Ann Duffy
last year, I was inspired to write a relatively long poem based around the Credit Crunch and its effect on the on the days youth.

I was interested whether this period of recession – with fewer career opportunities for fresh minds – would spark a wave of artists after what felt like a long spell of numbness in a political regard.

Photo Poem: “What Zedong Said…”.

Less than 12 months after writing it I can already see tangible reactions, looking back after the exhilarating Arab Spring (Arab Dawn?) where entire nations have stood up against their various regimes and with more ‘settled’ nations seeing huge protests from their youth against Austerity.

Of course I didn’t predict any of this – I had more questions than answers.  Still, I think it is a time rich in the emotive drivers that fuel new art and I look forward to the artists’ emergence, in whatever form they are taking.

I used the Working Title “What Zedong Said…” whilst writing the poem…in fact, I wrote it during one day mostly whilst riding my bike along my normal countryside route to work…as several long text messages on my mobile phone!

Back to the title, it was simply in reference to a quote by Zedong Mao (Chairman Mao):

“There is in fact no such thing as art for art’s sake, art that stands above classes, art that is detached from or independent of politics. Proletarian literature and art are part of the whole proletarian revolutionary cause.”

I find this statement very powerful and it sparked my mind at the perfect time when I read it.  I am proud of this poem, although I understand technically it may well be useless…either way, you can find it via this link:

Photo Poem: “What Zedong Said…”.

Being a working title I had intended to go back and change it afterward but ended up quite liking it – although it being so unlinked to the poem’s topics it may have an alienating effect on the reader…


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