Friday, October 21, 2011

Acceptance: Xenith


Xenith is a long-standing and absolutely excellent literary nexus. I am very proud that my poem “Constrictive” will be appearing.

I don’t have a lot of time, and even if I did, there is no way I could describe the fresh, socially incisive feel of this site. It started as a child of a pioneering digital impetus, something that previous generations couldn’t possibly understand. Quoting from the “About” page:

Xenith began life as an ASCII text zine that existed only in late 90s AOL inboxes. We began dual publishing issues on our website just before the new millennium in an attempt to broaden our audience. We released over forty issues in less than five years, earning a devoted following and press exposure, including an appearance in the New York Times Upfront Magazine.

I read this and thought, “This is it, an epoch-changing thin line in the history of civilization: brilliant minds merging the social arena of computer-driven technology with the august realm of literature.

It’s true. Xenith is the first generation of a new way. It is expressed through the verbal artistry of young minds (sometimes with old bodies) who capture something profound about the Generation Y experience. This profundity is consciousness-cracking. It is techno-shamanic and spiritually scientific.

What is the Gen Y experience? Here is where I tell you to read Xenith. All I can say is that the world is now, at least in half-real metaphor, an internet connectedness, Something it never was before, going back billions of years. At the same time, globalization and earth-shaking robo-drone-machinery transform our animal minds, everything from views on spirits to corporations to sex.

Xenith has its many-fingered Hand of Shiva on the pulse of all this. It is prophetic and yet somehow humble and friendly. It is dangerous while making you feel we must all face the danger as part of being human in these tumultuous times. Peril, on a planet where someone in Thailand talks intimately with someone in Canada, via the ether, breeds camaraderie.

The Publisher and Founder is Kelly Joi Phelan. The Managing Editor is Patrick Nathan. My communications with him were brief, and yet he comes across as very human, very real. What does that mean? It is, first and foremost, a serious compliment. No fakeness, no hubris. Just heartfelt interaction. A feeling that I was part of an authentic moment.

Sadly, this is rare.

I recommend this journal without mitigation. After reading its superb fiction or poetry, drop Editor Nathan an email about what you liked. Editors love to get encouraging feedback--and Patrick Nathan especially deserves it.


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