Spring is here, new releases and publications are beginning to proliferate!
Last night I went to the John Butcher/Gino Robair/Paul Hession gig at Left Bank, organised by Seth Cooke, where I unexpectedly bumped into Clive Henry who runs the Journal of the Belgae Folk Club micro-label. In another unexpected turn he was carrying a box full of booklets and CDs that comprise the BangTheBore Here compilation! This is a double CD and booklet of location recordings, music and improvisations from around the country (and even a couple of pieces hailing from beyond our shores). Layla and I made our own rather lo-fi contribution in the form of vowel singing in West Kennet Long Barrow. I’m really pleased by the diversity of approaches to place and sound on these CDs – an incredibly inventive collection of recordings all round. At present I’m not sure how to get a copy of this, but if you’re interested perhaps post a message on the BangTheBore forum.
Clive’s Journal of the Belgae Folk Club releases are also miniature baroque masterpieces – here’s a copy of the Astral Social Club release that I picked up last night, beautifully executed!
I was also happy (ecstatic!) to find out today that Scarlet Imprint‘s new poetry anthology Mandragora has been printed, bound and delivered to the publishers! The book itself, bound in copper shot crushed cloth looks beautiful, and contains the work of 48 poets along with nine essays – one by myself. I’m very much looking forward to reading the work of the poets as well as the diverse essays which seem to cover ground from Celtic traditions to contemporary cut-ups.
My contribution, Black Venus and Wise Hermes: The Poetry of Enchantment and Initiation, looks at the role of poetry in the Western Esoteric Tradition and antecedents. The essay covers coercive hymns of the Graeco-Egyptian tradition, the use of poetry in Libellus Veneri Nigro Sacer and the Folger manuscript, and the role of poetry and ‘phrensy’ in Lazzarelli’s Crater Hermetis. I’m very proud to have been included in this collection and look forward to the possibility of getting some more writing done during the summer months.
Furthermore, on the subject of poetry and arcana, Hadean Press published a chapbook of mine earlier this year, entitled The Mirror of Elicona. It’s one of the most personal things I’ve written for publication and is a magical romance of sorts, taking in poetry, psychogeography and musty old manuscripts. You can find out more here. And here’s a nice pic that Layla snapped of the pamphlets: