Sticks and Stones and Broken Bones
porcelain paper clay, stain, epoxy, mirrors
Words are often like tiny cuts, some larger than others, but individually not a huge deal. Add them up- often over months or years of abuse- and soon they become a gaping wound that festers and refuses to mend. The bruises and broken bones will heal and fade; you’re released from the hospital and sent home. Repairing the internal damage is often a life-long process, hindered by the invisible nature of the wounds.
Abuse has many forms and many faces. Eight years ago, it was my ex-husband, who put me in the ICU. Today it’s our own government, our neighbors, our family members spewing hateful rhetoric, fueling racism and bigotry. The children’s rhyme “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me” rings utterly false in a time of FAKE NEWS and death threats being sent to victims and their families, or anyone who tries to speak out against an increasingly fascist regime.
If you look into the mirror, what bounces back and sticks to you? Words have weight. Yours and mine.
Amanda Barr is an artist, curator, educator, writer, and social media strategist living in Seattle as a long-term resident artist at Pottery Northwest. Barr completed a BA and MA in Modern Languages before pursuing ceramics, earning a post-bacc from University of Colorado Boulder. Her work has been shown internationally, and currently deals with political and social inequality through historical references.