An only child, alone and wild, a cabinetmaker's son:
His hands were meant for different work, and his heart was known to none.
He left his home and went his lone and solitary way
And he gave to me a gift I know I never can repay.
A quiet man of music, denied a simpler fate:
He tried to be a soldier once, but his music wouldn't wait.
Such a pretty song. And it pretty much boils my experience with art down into a few short verses, and, I suspect, that of many artists. You can convince yourself you can take it or leave it, do something else with your life--but the Muse always shows up with the blindfold and handcuffs sooner or later and drags you off to her lair.
This has to be counteradaptive, although I can't see why it would persist if it weren't somehow useful. A strong artistic urge is linked to schizophrenia, depression, bipolar disorder-- Although I suspect that uncontrollable urge to *make* something ties into whatever it is that makes certain people in other cultures into shaman. So we must need it for something. It's not individually beneficial... but it does help the species grow, perhaps? I'm not going to deny that Michaelangelo's David is good for something. It is. And it's the same urge that lets us dream of equality, and freedom of speech, and Hoover Dam, and going to the stars.
Interesting that in at least a few cultures I can think of, those who are called-- but his music wouldn't wait --be it to art, or the priesthood, or whatever. Are expected not to marry.
Which could be conceived as a kindness, given the number of literary divorces the world has seen.
Bookkeeping: 2,428 words
Reason for stopping: End of scene
Presume not on thy heart when mine is slain,
Thou gav'st me thine not to give back again.
--William Shakespeare, Sonnet 22