Wednesday 22 September 2021

Ghost Lights

Sometimes I still wonder who I really am at the core, even after all these years of intensive soul-searching.  I'm older now, but in one way or another I've been seeking the truth since I was ten years old.  I've spoken here before of my childhood dreams of a strange ghostlike star.  A star that I wanted to believe was also an angel.  Even at such a young age I wanted to understand the mysteries of life, ourselves, and our connection to each other.  This wasn't and isn't some facile indulgence.  It meant everything to me.  It still does.  I remember feeling so distant from the other kids when I was growing up.  A head full of visions, dreams and nightmares.  I remember how tired and old I felt even in my early teens.  I knew it was an odd feeling, and yet it wasn't new.  An unnerving Deja-vu seemed infused into everything.  I guess that's the eerie result of sometimes knowing things before they happen.  Life feels alien yet hauntingly familiar.  I felt more at home among poems, memories and ghosts than real people.  That strangeness hasn't gone away.  I live with it daily.  

That's why these artist’s pages matter so much, I suppose.  Where else can I share the full complexity of those beautiful and sometimes terrifying experiences?  The people in my personal life have wonderful souls but they are only ready for mere glimpses of the unseen world.  I carry most of this knowledge alone for the simple reason that I don't want to frighten or burden the people I love the most.  It's a difficult path to walk, being sighted in this way.  I often use this ability to create various forms of magic.  To delight or intrigue, to spread joy and appreciation.  But there's a shadow side to all that wonder.  The world is filled with both light and dark.  The divine expanse of our imaginations contain both angels and demons, devas and asuras.  I'm all too happy to share the light, but the darkness I face alone.  It can be such a crushing weight to carry.  But then, that's the case for so many of us, isn't it?  Psychic or otherwise.  We all have trauma and struggles that we can barely articulate.  It's a difficult thing sometimes to receive love, or accept help, especially when we feel wounded.  A tragic irony; that in these times we often feel too brittle, too exhausted, and a helping hand can be confused for pity.  Nobody wants to feel weak or incapable.  We’re all trying to chart a course, no matter the odds against us. 

I think that's why I was so fascinated by the idea of stars as a child.  I was intrigued by the old explorers who mapped their voyages by following those glinting diamonds in the dark.  Ghost-lights, I called them.  Lanterns for the lost.  Tiny points of brilliance in the night sky that were actually something far, far grander.  The ghosts of midnight suns.  Perpetual flames that once burned with unimaginable ferocity, enough to warp the fabric of reality itself.  Enough to bend the boundaries of both time and space.  I knew that I would become a ghost one day, like the sun.  And so I’d ask myself, "What really matters to me when space and time don't work like they're supposed to?  What do I truly want to live for in a world where magic is real?  What might I be willing to actually die for?"  Getting older hasn't changed the answers to those questions.  I have more scars now, more experience, but my moral compass is still the same one I treasured as a boy.  A winged compass that keeps my eyes skyward.  I'm still using the stars to guide me.  Still making use of those lanterns when I'm lost.  For me it's about completing a warrior's work.  It's about making a commitment to God, to the higher powers, to creativity itself.  Even as a boy I wanted to use my gifts to help people, no matter the cost.  I knew all too well of the unseen.  I understood that divinity was real, but what good was that knowledge if it was mine alone?  And so I wanted to serve my Father in the only way I knew how.  Through creating art. 

Religion, spirituality, gnosis – call it what you want.  It was always a very real and important dimension to my life.  I saw things that other people couldn't see.  I knew things that other people didn't know.  This placed a very particular kind of responsibility upon me.  Whether I liked it or not.  Believe me, I often hated it with a passion.  I cursed the heavens and the earth, but it never stopped me from wanting to help.  These artist’s pages are where I feel most at home.  This free-verse angelic script; it's the journal of a spirit forever trapped in the demimonde.  For the rest of my life I'll never be able to truly leave this place, but that's ok.  I know I was put here for a reason.  It's incredibly bittersweet, but I have friends – dear and distant souls – who read these pages with genuine care.  In a way these souls know me better than many of the people in my daily life.  These pages allow those souls to be privy to my innermost depths in a way that cannot be conveyed in ordinary terms.  So, of course I feel close to them.  I believe that spirituality isn’t abstract or transcendental.  I believe it’s a living, breathing continuum.  It means so much to have friends who are willing to explore that continuum with me.  Thank you for that.  These distant, ephemeral connections mean more than I can ever say.  I tell you now, without these lanterns I would be lost.  Some of my dearest friends are ghosts – distant stars – but they've already taught me so much.  I hope I've been able to give back something as equally useful.  Something insightful or uplifting.  If a connection is meaningful and honourable doesn’t that make it real in some way?  After all, what's really real to a ghost, or to an angel wreathed in stars?

Thursday 16 September 2021


I had wings once.  Vast, incomprehensible dreaming unfurled about my shoulders.  Or folded at my back.  I've always preferred the streets and the alleys, even amidst the iridescent bright.   Kasi has never been one for diamonds at a distance.  I like to work up close and personal, especially when saving the dei.  Guarding the first forms of morning.  The noontide swell.  Those hours are precious, after all.  But do you know what truly excites an angel?  Dusk.  The coming of evening.  Those first few fingers in the dark.  The space where heat is found, fire is flexed and things are made.  Creation, they call it.  Outreach.  Like looking through a hole in the sun.  The adults gather.  Night becomes each one of us, mortal or otherwise.  Glances are tempted, hidden smiles exchanged with subtle sorcery.  Music soon finds a path to the ring.  The promise of dancing, or more.  I'm often right there at the circle's edge.  Beyond the ambient fire-light.  Howling silently at the opalescent moon.  My enemies ask, why the silence?  Well, because there is such promise in the hush.  So much possibility. They know it as well as I.  We threshold creatures all know it.  Outsiders, wanderers, rogues.  I'm a wild thing, beloved.  Almost insane.  Especially when protecting my kith, or the young.  I prowl the circle's edge.  Hidden, unseen.  Or worse; half-seen like a trick of flame and shadow.  It's what I've always done and always been.  It's why I have visions, and so many names.  I can move like a phantom when I need to.  But I'm not one of the infernal dark.  Far from it.  It’s quite simple really.  These marauding wraiths better run for their fucking lives, because I'm going to tear them all to pieces.  Gladly, and with a bloodied song in my heart.  Hear me, Karai’el.  You told me once that I could be truly frightening.  Especially when protecting our kith, and the young.  But I was still thoughtful and tender, you said.  What a beautiful, thrilling thing to hear.  I haven’t forgotten.  You were dancing with ghosts at the time.  Imagining me there in your arms, yet thinking me distant.  But I really was there.  An incomprehensible dreaming – unfurled.  Just beyond the edge of the flame.  I'm still here, archangel.  You don't have to wait anymore.  Just reach out and I will suffer in your stead.  I might jest and tease a little, but we're two of a kind.  I send you my love and my brother’s love, crazy though it is.  Enough for healing psyches, or sisters.  Enough for raging kings.  I wish you every blessing, Karai’el.  I hope you know that.  And the nine in my hand?  Oh, that's a little something we in the streets call double-dutch.  Stunting on tilt.  For those who know.  Why be too ostentatious, am I right?  You know I'm always carrying, and dexterity is a delightful thing.  Compelling, satisfying.  Like wolves, wine and good conversation.  So they say.

Monday 6 September 2021


Sometimes it feels like I've spent my whole life trapped inside the loudest silence imaginable.  A seething, shrieking hush.  This bitten tongue of M'ithriin.  These sorcerous hands.  Future, past and present all vying for my attention like incessant wraiths.  Rabid and open-mouthed just beyond my flame-lit circle of perception.  A babbling delirium.  I shouldn't be able to see them, or hear them, but I do.  Faces painted like a trickster's shades.  A thousand negations of unbearable volume.  And I wonder, how much screaming silence must I endure?  I'm not a prophet's verse or a dealer of death, am I?  I suppose I'm many things.  Fury and faith.  Numen and mercy.  So, do I sleep beneath the river – beneath this cathedral earth – and imagine my lost lights are with me once again?  The terrifying holy moment that mortals call the drowning.  Almost an eternity suspended between breath and crossing.  But I already know it wouldn't sate me, or calm the tempest that I am.  I've died before.  I drowned the day I was born, just as John did.  In the oldest waters.  Even submerged I hear it.  The call of then, of now, of things as yet undone.  Brothers, fathers, sons.  Sisters, mothers, daughters.  The endless midsummer chorus of Amnion.  Knights, and Dei.  The terrifying loss of those shining mutual affections.  These writings help a little, I suppose.  These letters of love.  Mira'na, Y'ashaya, Karai'el.  Truer words were never spoken.  But sometimes, if I'm honest, I wish I hadn't stolen your attention in the first place.  Sometimes I wish you knew nothing about me at all.  I know I shouldn't think like that, my sweet ones.  But is it fair in the end, to court and tease angels like this?  To torture myself with memories of the old chronology – showing you only the broken, trammelled pieces of this hidden earth?  Perhaps I'm only pretending to know the true depths of my Maker's glory. Perhaps I'm just a fragile bard, driven mad by silent screams.  I hope not.  I hope there's more to an angel's shadow than that.  The delirious, free-wheeling highs.  The crushing, abysmal lows.  I pray they count for something, wingtip to wingtip.  And so I ask myself, why even bother mentioning these things again?  I've said it all before, haven't I?  With far more brevity and wit.  Well, I say these things because I need to believe that I'm not alone.  That my hand and my words can add richness, insight and joy to the lives of those I love.  If I were to truly doubt this, even for a moment, then I would be damned forever.  This bitten tongue of M'ithriin.  These sorcerous hands.  The grief alone would kill me.  But I already live amidst shattered speech, among pages both ancient and new.  The said and re-said.  Written and rewritten.  Canto, legend and rumour; the living corpus of any true emissary.  Fallen, I want you to know that you have me all wrong.  I only feign at forgery.  Solipsism is nothing compared to the radiance and bonds of family.  Or friends.  I know exactly who I am and what I've built.  Even if you don’t.  So, I'm not about to give up now.  Not on love.  And neither are the ones I cherish.  They pledged it in their deepest thoughts.  All of them, scattered about this strange earth.  Hear me, beloved ones.  The silence has been far too loud for far too long.  We have endured too much to walk away.  We fight for a greater cause.  We stand with a higher power.  It's through grace and our combined sacrifice that dreaming is even possible.  We carved this table together.  From the very flame of perception itself.  Did you know?  You were there when the disc was hewn and blessed.  We were all there, connected.  Creating as one.  This circle of echoes, and eternity.