I swear I stumbled into this accidentally, into some sultry corner of Hell where bloody eagles make roosts behind the bar. I spend most of my time down here drunk off my ass to pass off the careless hours as if they meant nothing to me, lounging on leather in chiffon and lace, tipsy turvy and smelling like honeysuckle and everyone here says I am champagne. The bubbly kind, you know, a perfect golden spherical of air in a fluted crystal glass. Doesn’t help that I have curves that strangle and breasts and hips like one of those Angkor Watt carvings. Doesn’t help that my appetite for men (and some women) is severely unhealthy and I stumble around in negligees acting famished, sweet teeth out with my golden hair a net. You know how it is in Hell, right? Heels on, tits out, gloves up to elbows and maybe a Columbina mask when you’re nearly buck naked. Save some dignity, I don’t know. I’m not really here, not really there, in the between space where I’m fully awake on Earth in a bed that is probably possessed and fully awake in the Underworld hanging out with my boy toys. Boy toys, can I call them that? Is that like offensive? They’re either buff and tan or pallid and lean or like knives given demon form. Red hair, platinum hair, black hair. I’m a whirling dervish in a red dress, Satan is flames, Beelzebub is fucking Sauron again and I tease him about the stick up his ass, and what the fuck is the Archangel Michael doing here, doesn’t he have lives to save in sterile hospitals and shouldn’t he be fighting the General and Prince of Hell, not fucking throwing drinks back with them? It’s after hours, I guess, and honestly I seem to calm the storm of this War, Jophiel the curvy blonde idiot with skimpy white robes and golden sandals and wing like opals. I’m a hoot, I think, but honestly my divine purpose is to be the comedy that lulls you into complacency and whets bloodlust. Bed the general and fuck his brains out so he forgets the horror of bloodshed, or maybe he loves bloodshed in the bed especially so he’ll bite your wrist while making you raw. A comfort woman. A whore. A heirodule. Lady Qadesh. Fuck if I know, I’m just a fucking nympho. It’s all like Vulcan mind melding with energetic bodies, but like if that were sexy. Like if you could orgasm by teasing archangels and archdemons with your thoughts alone, saying Michael is boring, saying Satan is cheesy as fuck, saying Beelzebub is as overdramatic as fucking Darth Vader. Because let’s be real, Beel is Darth Vader, and Sam is fucking Kylo Ren, which I guess makes Michael fucking Luke Skywalker. I think I fit into this equation like R2D2, really annoying but cute, and that’s where the Star Wars metaphor fucking breaks down. They’ve been hanging out since Michaelmas, which according to the eponymous archangel is your birthday, and their gift to you was the most intense but weirdest experience of your life: a fucking foursome. Fuckkkkkk me. It’s really just a gangbang at that point and as they’re shooting the shit and you’re doing shots, one thing leads to another, and it’s all my fault because I’m a cocktease. Like as in I insult the fuck out of them then flirt then drive them fucking crazy and then categorize archangels and archdemons as Tits or Ass men. Sam is Squad A, Michael is split, and Beel is fully a T. They look kind of weird without armor or fucking stupid robes on. Like fantastical porn stars with wings. How is this my life. How is mind sex gangbangs a thing? I mean, I ain’t complaining, but I wonder if I’m the battlefield and their dicks are swords. They don’t “cross swords” though, at least in front of me, cause I ain’t into that. I’m a girl-on-girl chick and otherwise overwhelmingly hetero. Sam’s putting a puppet on his dick again, trying to make me laugh. Michael is tossing back scotch and playing with my hair. Beelzebub forgot to take his helmet off and his horns are poking me in uncomfortable places. I’m really an idiot when it’s late at night and I never figured out how to masturbate I guess seducing celestial beings is the next best thing. I’m probably going to make this mistake again. Ow.
A lot of bells rang at the Maryland Renaissance Faire this weekend, and my wonderful boyfriend took this photo of me with my own set of wings. Clarence ain’t got nothing on me!
Uriel is earthen skin with sandy freckles,
graceful as the light of dawn, toothy grin,
shifts all the colors of man, cycles days,
divine protecteress of all meek creatures,
fierce wolf mother, Warrior of Heaven,
clad in blue and white, beneficence gown,
armor of silver and voice like chapel bells,
hair a mane of joy, her spear is revelation,
and she is of the earth but also God’s Light,
she taught me the values of humility in youth,
in observing and nurturing the heart of storms,
she is the eye of the hurricane, potent power,
weather goddess, eyes green then hazel, brown,
all the banners of her forests, elk and hares
cuddle up to her warmth in winter frost tides,
sweet elder sister, I offer you peonies and
wine, the oceans you so love, friendships you
guard, in your realm all is crystalline light
and tropical day lilies, Caribbean breeze,
your form is cerulean splendor, blue flame,
oh Uriel, how sweet you are, how tender, but
you burn as fiercely as a star, so homage to
the Heavenly Firemaster, Light of God, Hail!
Dawn breaks over the sea strand, the Lion of God
is lord of the sun and the waters, elemental king.
Fire is also his domain, and as flames lick feet
his mane is bright bonfire, shift from beast to
man, man to beast, blond hair a windswept halo,
tanned as wood grain, eyes the blue of lost days.
We walk amidst the strand, froth kisses our ankles
hand in hand with my childhood idol, morning star
Ariel, Ariel, you were always there in my girlhood
I rode your wings through Milky Way fractal spills
you taught me to hold a sword too large for a child
to fight for my passions, to salvage the ruins of
war and find beauty, you were there in the torments
of playground battles and cruelties of childhood,
“Be strong,” you would say, “Be brave, I love you.”
I sang songs to you before I knew what worship was
just that you were my better half, master defender,
older brother cut from the same quick-kindle cloth
I was in such awe of you at seven, moreso at twelve,
for by then I knew you had your own monsters, and I
would hold back your hair as you cried into Hell,
comb girlish promises of spring into a soldier braid
you’re always the first on the battlefield, brash roar
of courage and recklessness, sometimes we would crash
and in the ruin of our blood and feathers, we laughed.
I stroke broad white eagle wings up to the sun, torch in hand, into the Heavenly Throneroom, and steal Holy Fire. The court is empty of angels and demons. My hair is long and curled like a brass candelabra and my gown white and glistening as if dew is a second layer on it.
I come to the waterfall gateway to Earth and jump down into the Deep, away from New Jerusalem, my wings skirting skies of velvet red and violet. Clouds dampen me and the stars stretch out like an elegy.
I come to the humans that amble about Africa without warmth or a way to cook their food. I descend as lightning, and Jophiel’s eponymous torch strikes the brush and lights bushes on fire. The ancestors of modern man marvel, kindle torches, and the fruit of the Tree of Life which I guard is given against God’s will.
I ascend back to Heaven, but as I break the boundary between the physical and the immaterial, I hear the cry of Heaven’s general, the shriek of a red-tailed hawk, a raptor of red and cream brown feathers, and he rises with the moon in the desert and dwarfs me, the size of a roc.
His eyes are not his own. Michael is possessed by Divine Will, whether Sophia or Demiurge, I cannot tell, but the urge to run courses through my limbs and I flash serrated wings and fly on a gale away.
Dart, dodge talons, but soon his beak is around my throat, squeezing the breath from my throat, roc throttling me until a white ring of a collar scars my neck and my torch is dropped far below to the abyss. For I have stolen from Heaven, and God is displeased.
Blood is hot on my breast, and I know in his divine berserk madness, it will take a miracle for Michael to hear me. I scream his name, over and over again, pleading until he breaks and shifts to wings and man, and then he sobs, over and over, clutching my rag doll body and broken wings:
“I’m so sorry Jophiel. The Mother told me to kill you. I wasn’t myself – your screams awoke me. Please, forgive me, forgive me!”
In that moment, Michael questions our Creator – or more properly, Creatrix – for the first time ever, and I clutch his face and kiss him.
“It’s okay, Michael – your madness has quit.”
He rocks me to sleep best he can as he sets to healing me, tears bright in his eyes.
“Why do we always hurt the things we love?”
Golden robes like the sun after a rainstorm
Raphael is a supernova smile, megawatt man
his brilliance outshines all of Heaven, his
halo blinding, but it is a good kind of burn
not sunburn, not radiation, but healing light
to me he is skin the color of ebony, cropped
black curls, amber eyes that crinkle laughing
I am a child in the dream – he pulls me in a
red wagon, we build sand castles at the beach,
and I am full of the joy of a small girl, with
my brother and bosom guardian pushing me
in a swing – it is such a blessing to spend
quiet hours with God’s foremost physician, angel
of cures to all ailments, quick with a chuckle,
quicker with a hug, showering blessings on mortals
like his love for Tobias, no demons tread here
on the strand of the City of Luz, for Raphael is
the bane of all evil, breaker of chains, freedom
encapsulated in a hearty chortle, my main man.
We revel in spring blossoms, cherry trees
sweet on the bud, my soul sister with wind
wild coils of black curls, skin like earth,
eyes afire with babble brook joy, I put a
fragrant white flower behind her ear and we
talk of the hereafter, of the future, of the
impossible, improbable, and miracles that rain
down from the sky like prayers, Uriel is the
Light of God because her laugh is lightning,
her smile a bonfire, her all-encompassing
presence unfettered celebration of life, and
though her trusty spear is at her side, her
true weapon is a disarming grin, for who could
ever war with the elder sister of the angels?