Vulgar Banditry

[S]o that your eyes may be opened unto that which from past time even unto the present ye have not as yet seen, nor thought of, nor believed.


I sacrifice part of my Self to heal
those who read what I write (I only write
for strangers, I only writhe for strangers,
though I’ve writhed for stranger), venomous, fanged

creature, frequent flier connected to
the web higher than which I aspire, yes,
wingèd co-conspirator with those yet
nearest the top whose next step is to fall,

a wicked caller of shots next up to
bat, hitting out of the park works of art
intended to inspire only after
they first shock, electric-lipped slinger of

song vituperative, innovative
creator and destroyer, changer of
games, pleasing crowds bringing storm-clouds making
it rain, simultaneous advocate

of the past’s passed-over ideas and
loud iconoclassicist, languishing
admixture of soft-voiced, cotton-mouthed, kind
saviour and whispering, vociferous


tempter of angels, carpenter and fire-
starter, flagrant manufacturer of
better options, better-fitting coffins
in which to put to bed (before they grow

bigger) those old bothers aching to get
out of your head and run away with your
reason, leaving you for worse-than-dead in
a darkening pit of crippling madness,

no use panicking, friend, this malady’s
malice happens as often to the dread,
chronically anonymous as it
does to great men, which is where I come in,

fabricating new interpretations
of the same shit’s differences from your
expectations, god-sent enterprising
purveyor of truer worldviews other

than the present one’s less liberating
horizon-limiting limitations,
brazen exchanger of circumstances
trafficking in currency worth more than


a moment since, in a moment, things are
all over anyway, bargaining with
pierced hearts (purchasing their cure with this charred
paper my ink’s warmth burns) for perfecting

misperceptions of worthlessness, open
letters correcting blind deception with
splendid, glittering lenses revealing
to them they will get through this, fresh lyrics

alluring them to health with jewelled verses
encouraging them it gets better than
this, offering up vulgar banditry
of poor hopelessness’ molten bullets,

a sweating of reassurance onto
doubting flesh, spilled lightning enlightening
wet diamonds on the broke backs of my
downtrodden courtesans, delivering

victims from their withering illusions
into fullest bloom, specious
provocateur working to our grandest
advantage this emergency of an


anxious, underwhelming room, marking up
occasions with a tongue my wit uses
to consume those who have no clue what to
do, smoother when hit with vitriol spit

by feckless enemies less quick, not so
slick, as I am when I turn damage in-
to myth, transmute annoyances into
soothing oil whose balm my bombs emit when

I eff-up their sabotages, doing
it ever since a babe in swaddling clothes,
an infant at the breast, peddling penned-up
aggression transgressing all too well the

masses’ vaguest arbitrariness of
nonexistent boundaries by crossing
society’s abyss, climbing over
it, sauntering beyond (while stepping on)

its opinions, different but not so
distant from the way Aleister Crowley
did, his own poetry considered filth,
just as frequently misinterpreted,


neither lonely nor depressed, what I am,
instead, is entirely uninterested
in pieces of shit I chose to stop
talking to way-back-when, when things ended

before they even came to realize
it, expired before there was any gain
to use them to get, bores moulded by the
boorish tedium of competing in

a contest only failures win, lemmings
treadmilling safely toward the blandness
of their own selfless oblivion, the
great benefit of regretting none of

it is this: that outgrowing another’s
definition encourages them to
get on with pausing lives they have been too
terrified to live, mimics too busy

meticulously curating for us
unsolicited highlight reels of so-
called accomplishments too mundane to sit
through without laughing at them and sighing


after (since it always ends the same way,
slideshown mediocrity pining for
my growing fame’s vacant praise, which these quaint,
fading memories so very, very

impatiently await), and they go on
so blatantly unknowing, fools (living
vicariously through a reflection
is nothing but a shattering of one’s

consciousness, unconscionable theft of
innocence already shed), never let
rumours fester into fact, that wound of
yours is more than just another crack in

the mirror, rear-view no-man’s-land no man’s
attack has ever left intact, remnant
artefact of desire spilled hard into
a cracked vessel its lure could not attract,

happenstance hamper for their anger’s rags
these raging mummies of untenured kings
hunger for your wealth of spirit fills with
ill temper, envy dirtying linens


your hollow shell (since the soul is more than
just what compels these vehicles of flesh
to follow one’s will) tempted their fingers
to unwrap themselves from, rap upon the

door of, and enter even after you
denied them any response, answering
the call to defy fitting in is more
important than being wanted by ones

whose thoughts you wander since thought is not marked
on their charts, comatose drones, every-
thing else determined for them, their course not
yours to embark upon, listen when my

words implore you to flout convention with
conviction, to flaunt what you are without
once giving in to inevitable
criticism, confidence is the way of

the magician, manifesting without
end (or any fear, pain, hesitation,
or interference) his own destiny,
certain that doubt is vulgar banditry.

1Abraham of Worms, “The Ninth Chapter. Concerning the Two Last Moons Which Must Be Thus Commenced” of The Book of the Sacred Magic of Abramelin the Mage, as Delivered by Abraham the Jew unto His Son Lamech, A.D. 1458. Translated from the Original Hebrew into the French, and Now Rendered from the Latter Language into English. From a Unique and Valuable MS. in the “Bibliothèque de l’Arsenal” at Paris. By S. L. MacGregor Mathers, published at London by John M. Watkins in 1900; page 71. Reprinted as “Facsimile of The Book of the Sacred Magic” in William Bloom’s The Sacred Magician: A Ceremonial Diary, published at Glastonbury, Somerset by Gothic Image Publications in 1992; page 19.