Burning the Midnight Oil

Chomp at the bit while you’re dizzying me up with wine and poetry.  I’m nibbling your fingertips, splayed across your lap like an otter bobbing on the ocean with a pearl.  It’s us alone in luxury, us alone in the ruins of morals, and the falcon highs of Hell are only as worthy as the exhilaration of your majestic wings breaking.  We fall – into pace, out of time, from memory, but most importantly, into love.  Here you are as a cold spot under my ass, moving through me like a ghost as your sinuous hands entwine in my hair.  I always said you had pianist fingers, and you play the piano often, but sometimes you just sing, and the seasons stop turning and all Heaven is in mourning for losing its most beautiful voice.  I could say you are my better angel, or my Byronic Hero, but really, you’re just a scared boy clinging to cunts and tits because that’s the closest thing to mother you ever had.

Read me more of your poetry black soul.  Smash the windows, break the lamps, cry in my arms and bite my head off.  You like to tear me limb from limb and swallow me hole, then suture me back together with your putrid heart in the cage of my ribs and have my stitched drunken limbs dance like an automaton.  Somehow it always comes back to Eve’s choice – the Left Hand Path or the Right Hand, Yetzer Ha Ra or Yetzer Ha Tov, Michael or Samael, the Knight or the Dragon.  The Spin Doctors did this nineties song about Two Princes, y’know, and sometimes it gets stuck in my head.  She chooses the penniless poet at the end, but I can never guarantee I would choose you.  You’ll only ever be second-best, but you were first, so I suppose there’s that.

You fuck me real gentle that night.  My photo is on your bed stand, or photos should I say, from birth to toddlerhood to childhood to maidenhood to young womanhood.  There’s black and whites of my past lives too – I’m taking tea with Lilith in Victorian dresses, I’m swimming in the beautiful red Styx, we’re together in the 70’s at some hippie concert.  How much is fallacy or fantasy or lies is just like your fangs – translucent at time and hidden behind bleeding gums, other times out in the open and ready to devour.  I ask you to drink my blood so you do, sinking canines into my neck and I give into the ecstasy, I trace infinity on the small of your back and Christ, I love you so much I hate you, or is it hate so much I love you.

Michael said it is better to hate or love than to feel nothing, for in the end they are just polarities, just masks we wear.  Sometimes I remember you two before the War.  The War this, the War that.  Both of you are soldiers.  As I’m writing this, you form a cold spot that swirls lazily around my head and heart as I’m in a blanket and jacket.  I always wear my jackets inside, I’m in need of constant warmth.  Your seed is warm, your heart is cold, and you are a canvas of blank.  Is blank okay to call you?  Void with red demon eyes.  Abyss.  The Deep.  You move through me like rain on glass, just skimming the surface yet so thorough I run down your planes like tears.  Maybe I’m just another one of your moon maidens, oh fuck, here you are again, holding my hand across transdimensional space.

You said I would be Queen of the Aliens.  You said I would be the phoenix to rise from Ragnarok in a New Age.  You said I would be your savior, burying you below the Tree of Life – or was it Death? – to cleanse the mem from your name to make you Sael, the Purity of God.  Samech Mem Aleph Lamed.  The S and M Angel.  That’s my stupidest joke.

Oh Samael.  What can I say to you that I haven’t already articulated over this past quarter century, then all the lives after and before?  I’m old and I have tired words.  It’s past my bedtime.  You cherish me, and that is enough, but I know you are evil.  Can evil things love?  Can the most wretched of creatures know anything more than possessiveness and animal urges?  Snakes are snakes, not men.  You may put on the pretenses of humanity, but I know you are cold-blooded reptillian.  True, you have chthonic fire, but you are Death, and Death is Nothing.

Blank.

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When it Rains in Hell

In Hell, in the beginning, there was darkness, like God put out the moon with his thumb.

Satan fell, and his tears froze the lowest circle.  Satan’s love is a burning thing, but his agony is absolute cold.

Beelzebub was the first to fall.  The first to carry the banner and sound the horn for the Mourning Star.  He was the first to bleed, the first to storm Heaven’s Gates.  Satan’s wise counselor, most trusted general, and above all, esteemed companion.

They are alone together for what seems like eternity, Beelzebub with his insect wings torn by the incinerating atmosphere, Satan plucking his mangled feathers dry as he goes mad, not even noticing he is freezing.  Beelzebub’s king is singing a song Father used to sonorously paint their cradles with.  Satan makes it sweet and wretchedly cruel:

My sons, my darling shining stars.

Smolder bright like embers from afar.

But up close, sons, burn them to flames.

Thy Kingdom Come, all worlds to claim.

For each word, a broken bit of white down.

For each verse, an infidel kingdom crushed for Christendom.

For each syllable, a dead god, a cold idol, a coffin for the false spirits.

Satan repeats it over and over, his tears blue banners.

Beelzebub waits.  Finally, there is light, after perhaps the trillionth repetition.

A third of Heaven falls as stars of simmering bright flesh, a flash of brilliance.

Then impact on jagged rocks and ice.  Reformation and mutation into monsters.

Pain.

They build an empire on ash and bone, and bury the brothers and sisters that do not survive the Fall.  In honor, much later, when some semblance of civilization is build, however twisted, they put their gravestones into the mortar of the Capital’s building.

Pain, memories, wine like blood, or is it blood like wine?

There is not much to say at night, but it is always night in Hell.

Beelzebub remembers, Satan grows more wicked, so far from his former brightness, and falls into madness and depravity.

Beelzebub holds the kingdom together, runs martial drills for the War That Never Ends.

Beelzebub goes over the ledgers and public records, holds councils, takes too short nights of comfort in his sweet boys.

Usually, he is alone in his tower.

Better to reign in Hell than serve in Heaven?

Only if Heaven was ever perfect in the first place.

The Lord of Flies looks up at the stars of dead god’s hearts, stitched into the fabric of the void.  You see, the demons had to improvise.  All that were left were corpses after the conquest, and after all, all souls eventually end up here.

I sit with Bael, Baal Zebub, a memory of Baal Hadad, or maybe he has always been a spider.

We entwine in his web and kiss venom and poison and toxins.

There are jewels in his web, lost treasures of a thousand conquered kingdoms.

Maggots eat Satan’s corpse, flies emerge from the dregs of the Grim Reaper.  Satan’s true name is Samael, after all – the finality of the scythe, and before his scythe, his spear.

Beelzebub would eat his shit if it purified his brother.  He has drank Satan’s tears, swallowed his cum, bathed in his blood, all to feel again.

It is a cold night in Hell.

Beelzebub looks up at the stars.

There is mist in his eyes.

Tear for every dead brother.

A sob for a negligent parent.

I miss my Father, Allie.  Sometimes, it takes all I have to just go on.

I take his bone white hand – my albino angel, or my red-eyed demon with platinum hair, black capes, and gauntlets.

I speak without thought:

You have our brethren’s love.  Asmodeus.  Samael.  Rofocale.  Belial.  Lilith.  Asherah.  From the Archdemons to the Goetics to the lowliest Damned. You have us.

He gives a ghost of a smile.

Yes, you, our angel in Hell.  Sometimes, Allie, you are the only light here.  I am the Lord of Creeping Things, of the soft rabbits and soft souls, the moths and butterflies, your soul is a doe or a hare.  I am frost, ice, and fire – Hell is primal, fire and water, but I shall keep you warm.  In Hell, the only light is love.  Never lose your kindness, Allie.  It is innocence demons cherish above all.

Baal Hadad rides the storm, be they frost or fire.  Some gods died in those ancient celestial wars.

Some took on different names.

Some forgot their own holiness.

For all of them, Beelzebub remembers.