Aesthetic Realism Online Library Poetry by Eli Siegel


 
 
Eli Siegel's note to the poem
Something Else Should Die: A Poem with Rhymes
1968
The purpose of art and of politics, in the long run, can be described as the same: the defeat of ugliness. Ugliness is the failure of a good general meaning or possibility of the world to be the same as the attitude, the motion, the intent, the doing of an individual or individuals. John Wilkes Booth seemed to override the intent of America with his intent: the killing of Lincoln made for a while an ugly individual attitude supreme. It was so with the killing of Martin Luther King. Is it not felt by the contemporaries of John Wilkes Booth and by the contemporaries of the unascertained killer of Martin Luther King that these killers are ugly? Ugliness is interference with beauty as large by the narrow which, for the while, is stronger. Injustice will die only when an individual no longer can feel that individuality is more served by injustice than by justice; by ugliness rather than non-ugliness. Certainly the lessening of injustice looks good-as a tree does or a paragraph may.

From Hail, American Development (Definition Press)
© 1968 by Eli Siegel
 
 
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