VOL XIV Issue 3, Number 155
Editor: Klaus J. Gerken
Production Editor: Heather Ferguson;
European Editor: Moshe Benarroch;
Contributing Editors: Pedro Sena; Michael Collings;
Jack R. Wesdorp; Oswald LeWinter
Magick is the ability to change your universe according to will power;
thought is energy, hands are the direct extension of sight, and tools are the
physical media to effect such change. Everyone's universe is different,
viewed from similar parallax, and yet shared; that's how soul works.
Infinity is everywhere at once and everything is possible right now. Ritual
magick is dependent on repeatable praxis, consecrated props, and
congenial setting. Goetia addresses divine intervention, divination is
transcendent thought (like tarot), invocation invites divinity into the self
or the thing, evocation directs discarnate entities for a specific service.
Magick is first a solitary venture; when the One soul steps into the cold
universe of stone She fragments; this is the sacrifice of autonomy; so that
each individual may have choice, can garner experience, for the sheer
lust of the doing. Solitaries are the rule; group work is the stronger, not
as liable to pitfalls, but subject to perversion by singular charismatic
leaders. The western magickal tradition is rooted with the Sufi and
Egyptian ascetics, merkabah mysticism, thence to qabalah, christian and
rosicrucian dogma, Martinist texts, with admixtures of theosophy and
oriental practices, some teutonic and druidic magecraft, wicca (mostly
Gardnerian), eventually via several collateral Golden Dawn temples active
in Europe ca. 1900. The O.T.O. is our primary exponent of sex magick in
the West; the Satanists are trudging their own evanescent self-serving
A cursory Golden Dawn based ritual framework considers: purpose
(why, with what and whom, when, and where); moral deliberation (is it in
harmony with your true will, non-invasive of another's, and is it
necessary); visualization of the method, action where it counts,
confrontation of barriers, guilt, doubt; proper path, pantheon,
correspondences, attributes; setting, tools, time; linking up and out
(right kind and degree of force, correct manner, proper medium, to the
exact objective); only then to the ceremonial phases (banishing the set,
purification of tools, centering of self, grounding the circle/warding
the triangle, invocation of divinity (first) or evocation of the menial (later);
then the proclamation of purpose or oath of fealty, then the specifics of
that particular work, then the descent of current and its investment into a
specific persona, object, or act; completion of the link (which is the most
crucial phase, requiring recirculation of force or stasis in the objective);
closure, license to depart, and a thorough record with later commentary
and annotation. All this to effect substantial change of self, in space, and
through time; not to be taken lightly nor according to cook book fashion.
The theory and techniques are not much different from that practiced
by any priest in the church of your religion; only the vestments and trappings
change; and you are the priest. The church doesn't much like that and is
quite intolerant of competition. Yet we are all magicians, albeit untrained;
we wish, we pray, we ritualize our lives; sometimes we get what we want.
That would be god listening. Magick and science and art intertwine; any
sufficiently advanced technology will seem magickal to a cave man; at
some future point science and art will overlap; art is the highest form of
creative self-expression, science is advancing applied knowledge, and
magick is the practice of soul, binding spirit and stone via belief.
Poets make good magicians and priests because we understand the
symbology by which the universe operates. The universe thinks in pictures;
also music, numbers, flux, and thought contrivances we're not well
equipped to practice. Poets work with the distilled iconography of our
racial heritage; we're into the syntactical Word, and words are symbols
attached to mental pictures. The ancient Hebrew rabbins believed in the
pictorial magick of specific letters; a whole qabalah of letter/word/number
exists, with correlations to specific attributes and cross correspondence
to other seemingly unrelated words. To write some things down is to
make them more real, to force them into reality, to endow the stone with
soul via meditation. That's what poets do---enliven the stone. We focus
right down on a singular moment and invest it with passion; intuitively;
because we must. We are compelled; we dip into a well without bottom;
we take dictation; everything yet to be written is already so. Enjoy. Take
care. Be thou of consequence.
Out on the edge it just burns colder,
the farther I see the older I get;
better to be home warming my stones
than wander the eye of infinity.
We set the light to winking
though there's no one there,
waste of effort so you'd think
and who the hell cares
if some idiot goes down
into the big deep
where there ain't no boojum sound
and frozen light sleeps.
We do it for the prospect,
for because we vowed
that soul blossoms electric
where there's nothing now.
That's the way it is with me,
we are devoted
to none as infinity
and we send our boat
into places no one dares
to picture or think
because grace is loved and rare.
That's why the light blinks.
Sometimes it looks just plain weird
like the lamp got spider webbed
with interference patterns
when god side stepped prime numbers.
Usually it's beautiful
of coruscating colors
luminous backlit footlight
through microscopic gratings.
Always plangent stuff and real
on the universal stage
where you can feel with your eyes
and smell the force of balance.
*Editor's note: There is an inflection above the "e" in Moire
which, unfortunately, we have not been able to restore in the HTML
A little dab of that,
a little bit of this,
cellophane, paper clips,
some spit, a splat of jizz,
and that's the building biz.
Everything in its place,
veiled space for every one,
river time, rings of stuff,
black sail cloth sewn with suns
and no it ain't yet done.
Stacking Stones in the Dark
Let's see. Jupiter, you go over there.
And you, sweetheart, they'll be calling you Durt;
they'll tear your mantle with iron plowshares
and build castles with the spiff from your shirt.
You're Mercury, right?---OK, you hang near,
and you with the rings you can look pretty.
Moon, you keep them company, that's a dear.
You asteroid lot, spread out and wander,
you're the ones with the nickel and gritty
they'll be mining when they get outta stir.
Pluto, I think you'd better be a queer,
ain't no point with all you rocks run the same,
Neptune, you're with this green dame, we done yet?
Venus, honey, you get it on with Mars,
and all you smithereens, you can be stars.
He sleep with wendigo women
suck horrible rattlesnake swill
wears yellow fang bearclan glimmer
coat porcupine blue kestrel quills.
Make much magick with Manitou
tell wind to whisper along wall
all with holderol and hoodoo
when hemlock grow cathedral tall.
Last place he go to see sun rise
is up on huckleberry ledge
he sacrifice by burning eyes
follow shadowbird track off edge
he with you when your carcass dies.
Whoever shows up
that's who the revelry's with,
then we'll hoist a cup
to full barns wild oast bee fryth,
uisqebaugh to toast
first foot over that doorsill,
where we will boast of
what to spare and boar we've killed,
of treasure we've brought
for first pick of your daughters,
for the wars we've fought
that our bards declaim in verse
She gets pissed off if you peek,
guys go blind or antelope,
but I saw her just last week
by the Kaaterskill upslope,
absolutely gorgeous ass
worth chasing for a life time,
didn't catch her under pass
but the rest was really prime
seventeen year ardent girl.
I did the old genuflect,
she tossed me a henna curl,
a brief glimpse of intersect
where divinity meets man
in a mandorla sigil.
I'll climb up there when I can
to keep her ancient vigil
and maybe she'll enchant me.
down in the kitchen
I must be lucky as hell.
Copper clad buckets
hauling my wishes
up from a bottomless well.
The Spirit is in the least of things:
a turtle on a log in a bog,
the pattern on a lady bug's wings,
the evanescent touch of salt fog,
in the mating call of katydids,
soft on the wind just before it rains,
in the laughter of curious kids,
frosted flowers on your window panes,
and if you ever feel that you're flat
in your spiritual spending account
all you need do is befriend a cat,
it seems they have it in good amount.
May the cloak lie soft on your form,
may its crafting keep you from harm,
should the enemy look your way
let him be spooked and creep away,
should you have need for sustenance
let your hand thieve with ancient wust,
if you need lodging or a ride
be unseen as you slip inside,
though the path be twisted of stone
go alone without fear or shame,
blame no one nor call out a name,
go quiet on the hidden sand,
come thee home safe, be as I bid.
First he bought a ring,
then she brought her stuff,
they made everything
and that was enough.
About the Golgotha thing:
walking that narrow thin line
but only left one footprint,
turning water into wine
treating common men as kings,
having twelve over to dine
with silver shekels and glint,
for to weave belief and signs
of fulsome fire and flint,
winnow chaff, find what's divine
despite dead demonic dint.
Get thee behind me he said,
go through me, share salt, break bread.
Willie swept the strangers' room,
scrubbed the millboards on his knees.
Then he fletched a willow broom
taken from the tower trees.
Umber from his Moorish chest,
candle wax from local bees,
benzoin the very best,
vellum book of litanies.
Then he scribed a circle round,
gathered his solemnity
and pronounced it sacred ground.
Up the spiral stepstone wafts
a soft sexual fire.
My uncle Al bought Boleskine
to get him in good with god.
Set his graven stone between
river sand and virgin sod,
traversed past Abramelin,
shot his astral body wad
the fastest I ever seen,
henceforth bared his fangs and claw
brilliant hued with brand and spleen,
ate his wanton women raw
lewd beholden to a fiend.
That's the church bent about unc,
mostly he went as a monk.
I fired up the time machine
and went back to the Pleistocene,
set up my Steinway in a cave,
installed fine stained glass architraves,
brought in Calphalon kitchen stuff,
made sure the pantry had enough,
fitted out a thick brass bound door,
mosaic tilecraft on the floor,
a view over the Pacific,
flaming sunsets hieroglyphic
with Celtic braid embroidered weave,
and then I felt ready for Eve.
You know, there ain't too many girls
back there wearing sandals and pearls;
god, I searched the coast down and up
just for to share a lovers' cup;
all I could find were shambling slinks
who shunned Chopin and didn't think.
Until one day another door
flared its eternal on the shore;
she came calling and well supplied,
she even brought her bonafides
to hang on the wall next to mine,
and...some red sparkling Dago wine.
One torrid fucking session kink
later I'm hook line and sinker;
never underestimate sex
in the racial sequencing hex.
All you bald archaeologists
with your Leakey and Lucy lists,
I'm telling you it ain't that way.
Homo sap came on in a bay
on the eastern Pacific rim.
I was hot and Eve's not so prim,
the surf a brilliant place to screw
our gene pool up and launch a race.
There were wolves and big long-noses
and pigs with fangs; we shared the wood
with anthropoids and feral ghosts
and things we never understood.
Back then the trees held up the sky
and the land was a lot wetter,
you could smell the blue horizon
and I liked its fragrance better.
These days the only animals
mistrust our spoor and flee our smoke,
except for garbage picking gulls
our bank account with god went broke.
I think what it is she's really pissed
about us mucking off the blue,
I'd be firing up the business
hire some chimney exorcist
if I were her that's what I'd do...
Tenzing had been there because he loved it,
being there with god above the garden,
so he considered himself the warden
of all that could be seen from the summit.
One summer he camped up there for a week
dug into an igloo on the south face,
doing nothing, just staring at the place
that commoners fear but holy men seek.
He talked about it some when he got back,
he said: "God speaks if you will listen good,
she lives in everything, the stone and wood,
all the most basic objects near your shack.
What you need to do is make the world stop
spinning and that is simple at the top."
I'm their youngest son, the last to leave home;
when our dad died I moved back in with mom.
She got pretty blind eyed towards the end
and quite a ways around the head room bend.
I didn't go out much those last few years,
then wearied of the daughter in law tears,
brought my new girlfriend in after a date;
right about while I was fixing mom's plate
she said, "so, girl, you're gonna marry him...?"
I remember things whirling, going dim.
I figure then she knew her time was up,
peering shrewd across the rim of her cup.
I'm struck speechless; Kate was quick, she said, "yes,"
I thought to jolly her along I guess.
My mom made this thin little crow foot smile,
and died quietly that night without guile.
It's sorta spooky how I lost one so,
yet gained another; that's how mothers know.
All the occult treasures that we own
are stored in a warehouse near Mashpee.
The ark, Jack Kennedy's scarlet phone,
the cup, a branch from that Boab tree,
the spear, a piece of skull with a hole,
a shroud, the red sea Moses bit staff,
transept of a cross, Amundsen's pole,
gold hammer head with a rowan haft,
reputed dragon's egg, oldest book,
what looks to be some meteor slag,
pixie dust, eye of newt, captain's hook,
all the magnificent dregs of hags,
of wizard kings, uncle Al's quartz ball,
all carefully catalogued and signed,
banked behind pentagon seals and mined
with an atom bomb.
Nobody tells me what to do.
I'll decide who gets to fuck me.
Love me and I'll be true to you;
betray me, I'll pluck your eyes out.
My cup is phosphorus and rue,
the lout who drinks of that he dies;
lest you think you can flee my curse
it's Hekate who taught me lies.
The eye of the pyramid
sits in a pentagon vault
mounted with fearsome fire
on a cubic block of salt.
Once a moon the nigh priest brass
comes to make some hoodoo hex;
they drink rum and blood of beasts
mixed with stinking swill and sex.
Usually it's hooker chicks,
of late it's infidel hounds,
expensive magickal books
and ambergris by the pound.
All for one look at what's real
and twist it to their purpose
with bad intended dealing
and dangerous and murder.
When I saw the ritual done
they were ranting for a war
with tanks and bombs, cannon guns,
and the bunker stank of tar.
After that I struck them blind
so that they'd not be able
to find me or my weapons
nor what's set on my table.
I curse you and your plotting,
may your altar fall to dust,
your eyeblink rot with fungus
consumed by your sorcer lust.
That's my hand lying in the cinders
almost like a claw with curled fingers.
I mean for you to gaze with disgust
on this sodden mass of ashen dust.
I want you to memorize the smell
so you will always recognize hell.
If the specter ever stalks your land
with gall and lies remember my hand.
No one ever refused one of my kids,
they all held them hidden safe through the war.
I saw to the fake ID's and permits
and kept the records buried in glass jars
under an apple tree, the tree of truth.
The best place to hide stuff is plain in sight
because that depends from a sacred sooth
that even Evil considers its right.
Afterwards I went back and brought them forth,
there were two thousand five hundred some names.
I didn't tell anyone what that's worth;
we're still superstitious about the flames.
Many did likewise bent low in that war,
nor am I content. I could have done more.
On the west end of Molokai
where the precipice loves water
when the moon is dressed in her pride
the magicians bring their daughters.
It's monsoon weather on the cliff
all the fissures laugh with delight
and you can spell infinity
from a well hidden platform height.
Her steps are narrow living vines
black basalt core-block lava weft
she learns the smoke divining lore
while they burn copal in a cleft.
If you were to stand out to sea
in war craft plying secret coves
you'd not admit her shrouded skill
nor bow triumphant in her grove.
I thought I saw Saint Nicholas
come riding up our lane.
He was attended by a child
who held the horse's rein.
To one side walked a sailor man,
the other went a thief,
and all the courtly noblemen
bent low in their belief.
It was a fleeting instant then
when all of time stood still
and in the silent way he went
with goodly wile and will.
That night I set a portion out
for every wandering waif,
and wished them welcome home at last
with solemn shrift and safe.
Sometimes we observe silence
for to hear the universe
how feral stars dance in tune
under a dark chandelier
why our moon takes a mistress
on cathedral burning lakes
what the sun does in his bed
to engender planet curl
where the comets get their bent
amid the oort of plenty
when the asteroids come home
in the passage of their kin
whence all things at last are done.
Now we will sing the old songs
as we did when we were young,
bring your kids, all are welcome,
linger soft and sing along.
It matters not if you can't
or fear you'll hum out of key,
what counts is that we agree
in harmony on our land.
Let a waxen taper glint
at every casement window,
peace upon your foe and kin
on the breast of winter snow.
Let carols fill the evening
whisper hill fall deep in dell,
candelabra solemn bells,
remember this when you leave.
Frankincense and myrrh suffuse
the chamber where I sleep
in a warded nautilus
embarked on the deep.
black indigo to sheen
where curvature meets fractal
of the stone I ween.
On a spindle obligate
fine thread of bombyx weft
each to her partisan
until none are left.
Apparently god was pissed.
So she made a little list
of stuff that wouldn't be missed
like flowers, gardens, and trees,
definitely bugs and bees,
any one with arms or knees,
in fact anything that grows,
journeys, trickles, flows or blows,
stars, moon, sun, you gotta go,
all the weft of burning quick,
hearing, feeling, smell and sight.
Then, when it was done quite right,
she left and flicked off the light.
I unreeled an orange extension cord
and plugged it into a black hole socket.
Then I went after the last cinder word
and laid its head as tinder on the block.
Striking a match was a matter of guile
since I hadn't a foot to stand or lift,
so I bade all my stuff to step in file
and stitch itself into a fire drift.
After that all I had to do was make
a pinch of cubical salt with the flux,
sing that last word into the first awake
and stick all those peptides down into muck.
It didn't really take all that long much,
just eternity compressed into one,
and all of animate stone to my touch,
ah, sunday of rest as it has been done.
All Poems copyright (c) 2006 by Jack Wesdorp
All poems copyrighted by their respective authors. Any reproduction of
these poems, without the express written permission of the authors, is
YGDRASIL: A Journal of the Poetic Arts - Copyright (c) 1993 - 2006 by
Klaus J. Gerken.
The official version of this magazine is available on Ygdrasil's
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