“When you hunt for souls in the winter rain
I shall listen in the gaps between towns knowing
Your face is the night storm of the underworld
And you shall bring terror to end all terror.” From Enchanting The Shadowlands, by Lorna Smithers
The Hunter Of Souls
Recommended listening while reading:
Undertaker by Disemballerina
Waiting for a band to play, I thumbed through a Nihilist tract and remember what it means to be mortal while silver-and-black antlers sharpen against flesh. I remember: it’s from the Dead we weave our lives. It’s from the Dead we weave our Meaning. The Cauldron of Awen is as Black as the Cauldron of Annwn, and from both spring the songs of Meaning.
It begins with a woman holding a candle. She is walking around the room, a guide for the priestess, who is casting the circle for Samhain. But don’t look at the priestess just yet; hear her, yes, hear the words that begin every circle in our tradition, but watch the woman with the candle. The first bit of magick walks with her – for she is not only a woman with a candle, but an Evening Star, a psychopomp, the leader on a path down into the underworld. In the double-sight of ritual, she is both physical and mythical, both our friend and an unfamiliar star.
For a couple of hundred years we have been telling ourselves that we can dig the midnight black remains of other life forms out of the bowels of the earth, burn them in massive quantities, and that the airborne particles and gases released into the atmosphere–because we can can’t see them–will have no effect whatsoever…. …At every state our actions are marked by a lack of respect for the powers we are unleashing–a certainty, or at least a hope, that the nature we have turned to garbage, and the people we have treated like garbage, will not come back to haunt us. Naomi Klein, This Changes Everything (p.166)
Is it any wonder that a society which denies the Dead is destroying the earth? Excrement and Exclusion
In Lacanian psychoanalysis, there’s the concept of the Excremental Remainder — the thing which fails to fully integrate into the total. Yes, I’m gonna be talking about feces here, but bear with me a little.
Fighter jets are flying overhead; their screeching rage punctuating the rumbling roar of heavy-tread machines behind me. Particles of dust and exhaust cling to sweat-drenched skin in the searing sun. Everything feels dry, desiccated, as if all the shadowed life of this place has been swept over by a sudden desert. My attention’s drawn to something unexpected–four red strokes against white, crimson vivid as blood, pasted against a steel pole. It’s a glyph, a sigil, with a power steeped in terror. I need to leave this place to find a friend, but my attention is held.