Most readers and writers would concur that potent literature is robust, resonant, and entertaining. Few, however, agree when defining these criteria. We believe that literature should strive to re-conceptualize the world and render with nuance its complexities. Literary work must evolve the poignancy with which the reader experiences life. Unfortunately, much contemporary literature, galvanized by the perverted specter of “make it new,” has prioritized novelty over potency. At best, such literature conveys an attitude in place of the intellectual wonder that underlies meaningful writing. At worst, it masquerades under the justification of experimental innovation, though it proves glibly trite, meaninglessly incoherent, or both.
Intellectual wonder is multifaceted. It can be evoked by curiosity or monotony, spontaneity or reflection. It arises when the urgencies of a moment, the fascinations of a thought, compel an author to speak. They affirm him in the conviction that the world must hear, even if it does not listen. Wonder smiles coyly at Intellect as it whispers, “let us go then, you and I.” You and I, experience and author, reader and text. Wonder voices the yearning to translate introspection into a conversation of consequence. Intellectual wonder convenes a meeting between text and reader. It speaks cogently and earnestly yet paints ever subtler grades of meaning with reflection, reconsideration, and active interpretation.
It is our hope that this journal can both reflect and stimulate sensations of wonder. We thank our readers, our authors, and all those who submitted work to us for review. It has been a great privilege to explore the passions that animate creative writing in this country. We enjoyed the vast majority of the near thousand works submitted to us and encountered many more worthy pieces than we have included within this volume. Please help us build the vibrant community of sharing and shared wonder that forms the foundation of our literary endeavor.
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