Botsotso Literary Journal

(Volume 21)

“Light Up the Night”

Poetry Editorial

Prose Editorial

Allan Kolski Horwitz
Kharys Ateh Laue
(Senior Editor)
Sarah Lubala
(Senior Editor)
Saliha Haddad
(Associate Editor)
Siphiwe ka Ngwenya
Shari Maluleke
(Assistant Editor)
  Warren Jeremy Rourke
(Former Editor-in-Chief)


A Special Thank you to Paula Ferreira 
Blaze Media

Dedicated to Dr. Mary West

In the scientific community, the theoretical physicist Max Planck’s dictum is now well known: consciousness is the fundamental; we cannot get behind consciousness. For us today this assertion may seem to be a self-evident truth, an a priori fact of experience, and not altogether a revolution in the structure of knowledge. But the truth is that for the longest time, matter and phenomena were considered to be merely ‘out there’ to be discovered and known – the role of consciousness, was not “fundamental” in scientific method.

For the visual and literary artist, our great project is an altogether opposite one. Our journey is not ‘out there’ in order to know and discover matter and phenomena, so much as it is, an arrival of matter and phenomena into our consciousness. And by the alchemy of representation, to turn these subjective experiences into our works of art, and once more, to deliver them into the consciousness of viewers and readers. And so, Planck’s dictum does, in part, hold true for us in the arts community as well – consciousness is the fundamental, but where we must part ways with this truism – is that the whole duty of the artist is to get behind consciousness. I believe we have an exemplary demonstration of what we are here speaking of, with Hazel Woodward’s paintings. These are no mere objective representations of an ostensible shared reality. No-no, these are something else. Something valuable to the artistic method.

The works of literary art that have gone into the making of this first digital version of the Botsotso Literary Journal – yay! – altogether, expand our horizons of understanding in a world seemingly hell bent on closing consciousness down. Here, the literary pushes the blue sky out of the way, and we magnify the phenomena of our innerverse to see just as stargazers looking at images from the Hubble and James Webb telescopes allow.

I would like – as Dr Mary West once showed me how with the journal we did together – to mention a few specific contributions, coming into their own formations here – but I’m not going to. There are constellations and nebula and the results of supernova, neutron stars and comets and all the wondrous stuff of the universe, right here in this digital creation that I would rather encourage readers, and especially the contributors, themselves to find. To have been able to see these, myself, to have journeyed behind consciousness because of the works of art herein – gosh, just what a thing!

Thank you, all.
Warren Jeremy Rourke
Former Editor-in-Chief
[Stardate] 1 November 2023

P.S. Thank you to the editor of the The Mocking Owl Roost for co-edition permission of Michael Boyd’s “All Mixed Up with the Taste of the Sun”.