The Role of The Artist – Faiz Ahmed Faiz

Who are we? We the writers,poets,artists and what can we
contribute,if anything to avert the mortal calamities
threatening mankind?

We are the offspring, in the direct line of descent of the music
makers of old. In times gone by, these ancient ancestors of
ours, could make the rain come down with their songs, they
could make the deserts bloom. And they not only implicitly
believed that they had these powers, their community
believed it too. This is because they found the dreams and
longings,words and music that the people could not find for

In subsequent times with the rise of kings and captains,blood
soaked warriors, professional priests and money
changers,much of the power was lost. But the magic and both
its appeal and hunger for it,have remained. The mystic
poet,who defied both emperor and priest to articulate the ills
and afflictions of his fellow beings taught them to believe
in,and fight for justice,beauty,goodness and truth,irrespective
of personal loss or gain—

So that is who we are, the inheritors of this magic,and the
power of this magic,in big ways or small,depending on the
intensity of love our hearts possess,or the anguish we share
with an anguished world,or the measure of our strength to
defy what is evil and to uphold what is good. And thus as a
writer or artist, even though i run no state and command no
power, i am entitled to feel that i am my brother’s and sister’s
keeper and out of this vast human family,the nearest to me
and the dearest,are the insulted and the humiliated,the
homeless and the disinherited,the poor,the hungry,and the
sick at heart.