Friday, January 24, 2014
My Chapbook Rebellion Relaunches at TMR!
Click here for Rebellion info
Jennifer Hollie Bowles & Co. have relaunched The Medulla Review Press, and with it my chapbook, Rebellion, which won first place in a TMR competition. Every poem in this volume is previously published, somewhere or other, and they are some of my favorites in over a decade of obsessive scribbling.
The title comes from Dostoevsky's The Brothers Karamazov, which has a chapter of the same name. Like Ivan in the novel, my voice here is damning, crisp, passionate, and half lost to madness, as I challenge the horrors hidden in the status quo. Ivan is eventually seduced and mentally destroyed by a psychotic visitation from the Devil, and maybe that will happen to me someday: but, in truth, the only Devil I see is metaphorical, a poetic descriptor for the lack of conscience and superabundance of greed that infests the US Empire.
Please consider purchasing Rebellion, either in physical form (recommended) or for Kindle download:
GET A COPY OF REBELLION
To find out more about Medulla's relaunch, go to the site:
This is an exciting time for the editors as they begin to build a press whose philosophy blends aesthetic excellence with spiritual healing and psychic journey. One reason I am so glad to be affiliated with TMR is the wonderful ethos that underlies their literary aesthetic.
We need to support venues like this. If we want to survive our techological push, we need a mature ethic: we need an empathic and sane psychology, a progressive awareness that seeks mental health and self-candor in leaders and citizenry.
We have been programmed by a reckless 19th-century version of industrial capitalism. It trojans a fanatic dogma of 'money first' that encourages narcissists and sociopaths to rise to the top. It promotes a most sad practice: shallow competition for material goods in the name of an insidiously instilled vanity. Marketers and advertisers use deep-mind techniques to dumb us down. They sell illusory fixes for manufactured neuroses. It's pernicious, a mind assault that cripples our potential to think about what is right and decent, what is compassionate and virtuous. The system of logo-commercial saturation impedes the evolution of our collective conscious. At the same time, profiteers speed the growth of technological power.
In the early 21st century, we are still like thirteen-year-olds in terms of our moral proficiency. We are easily provoked punks with nuclear weapons.
Consider some great moments in the history of civilization: the quantum leap from pre-democratic to post democratic culture; from no human-rights to an assortment of human rights. This is the sort of transformational gestalt we need. We need new concepts to inform and govern the integrity and wisdom of our behavior, both as individuals and nations.
We are so much more than the petty bickering consumers that the exploiters want us to be. We can advance the Good. By this I mean a Good beyond any one religion. It is touched on, as an archetype, in all religions; but the Good is secular as well as spirit-laden, and advances through a trio of empathy, ecstasy, and philosophy.
We do not have to be Selfish. We can transcend this bankers' concept, and seek, instead, something noble and environmental: the Good.
That is the crucial--absolutely necessary--message of our time.
The enemy? Narcissism, product-hunger, vanity, avarice, sociopathic demagoguery.
Evil? Evil is these forces riveted into an imperial culture machine that sacrifices human life and soul-beauty for the profit and supremacy of a very few. As we proceed into the nuclear age, the genetic-weapons age, the age of sophisticated robots, we can't afford to act in the way Peter Gabriel lays out in his song, Games Without Frontiers.