I always seem to wander past the right piece of street art at the right moment here in Montreal, as if some pirate-propagandist were reading my mind, or better yet, engaging in a dialogue with me. So here's yet another good fit: a single rose, growing out of the cracks of the capitalist landscape, or perhaps causing them. Or both.
In the context of the Quebec student strike this August, from my perch in Montreal, I'm savoring what beauty means when it's not the top-down manufactured and warped ideal hammered into us from birth, as prelude to the commodification of body and soul. I'm lingering on the beauty of what we can, on occasion, create along the way — or gift anonymously in civic space — as we experiment with a more collectively generous world.
Perhaps it was the collaborative expansiveness of illegal evening demo 100 on August 1 that sent me spiraling into an appreciation of "the beautiful," along with its two idealistic comrades, "the good" and "the true." Or it could have been the aesthetically pleasing bounty of the Pique-Nique Rouge ("Red Picnic") and its confederally powerful pan-Popular Autonomous Assembly on August 4. Maybe it was the public release/reading yesterday, August 6, in "l'Agoria" of UQAM (the hotbed of the student strike) of the moving and lawbreaking Professors/Teachers Manifesto signed by over two thousand educators so far, or the second Rêve Général Illimité creative intervention highlighting poetry this time around on August 8 followed later in the evening by our Mile-End Orchestrole joining up with some Outremont folks for marching musical outreach for both our neighborhood assemblies. It could also be the magnitude of the almost-organic interconnections that are happening between students, neighbors, parents, teachers, workers, and others to uphold the strike next week between August 13 and 17 in particular, or the tiny interactions like a red-square-wearing stranger yesterday telling me that she thinks this