Poetry does nothing. – W.H. Auden
It's hard to get the news from poems, but men die miserably every day for lack of what is found there - William Carlos Williams
But are these positions mutually exclusive? If mainstream culture is any reflection, poetry, it's true, is not doing much, and I would assert, equally as true is that people are dying "miserably every day for lack of what is found there." And if this is true, then poetry and all art is always important, but even more urgently vital at a time when tens of thousands of Americans, Iraqis, and others, are indeed dying because of the commands of a President who, seemingly elated with his role as Commander-in-Chief, boasted, "Bring it on!"; at a time when most every major phone company has been secretly providing the government with millions of Americans' phone records; at a time when children in the richest country on earth have a 1 in 4 chance of being born into poverty; at a time when many in government, as well as many in citizenry, are persuaded by chemical companies and oil conglomerates to act as if global warming is just a little bit more summer; at a time when it is representative of how dire things are to simply remember that George W. Bush is the leader of the "free world."
The word "siren" can be defined as a warning; something that cautions people to a danger or important event; a sound or sight that alerts. On the belief that any and all art can be and often is an alert, a small and not yet very loud, but earnest and aspiring Siren will soon be sounding. For more information, to contribute a small donation of money or any amount of artistic energy, or to submit quality poetry, visual art, short fiction or nonfiction (for the second issue), contact me by way of e-mail.