Wednesday, 12 June 2013

The Brotherhood of the Screaming Abyss

In the autumn of 2012, ethnopharmacologist Dennis McKenna’s ‘The Brotherhood of the Screaming Abyss – My Life with Terence McKenna’ was published to an audience of dedicated fans of the late writer, lecturer and ”psychedelic bard”. Twelve years after his death and close to the much discussed end date of the Mayan calendar on 21 December 2012 – which he was strongly associated with through his Timewave Zero theory – it was time to take a deep look at Terence’s life and legacy.
The Brotherhood of the Screaming Abyss is a comprehensive work divided into three parts:BeginningsInto the Abyss and Invisible Landscapes. Told in a chronological manner, the book consists of 50 short chapters. It’s a pleasant touch that makes for a smooth reading experience, which is further alleviated by Dennis’ surprisingly accessible and well-written prose. The book also contains 37 images. One of the most notable is a photo aptly used on the cover. Shot circa 1957, it shows “Terry” – the poet – gazing dreamily into the distance, while younger brother “Denny” – the scientist – is holding a pair of binoculars. It’s as if the picture was destined for the cover of a biography...
continue reading this literary review on Psychedelic Press UK

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