andragora - further explorations in esoteric poesis.
A companion volume to Datura comprising nine extensive essays and the works of 48 poets.
A chthonic and deeply rooted work.
Pulled from the ground, its shrieks threatening madness, carved and anointed, given form and breath…so it is, the Word walks.
Dreams and revelations put to paper form the body of this second anthology of esoteric poesis. Datura, that silver deadly bloom, unfurled its petals to reveal the harmonics of inspiration born of moonlight, a narcotic song sung by a siren. Mandragora continues in this tradition, yet thrums also with its own chthonic music – the pulse of stars beneath the earth. The blood-body and the soul-mind meeting each other in the word, in things that grow and shift below – mycelia and nutritive rot, the green heart of a seed turning in the lightless deeps.
Yes, the poetry in Mandragora drives deep into the humus heart of experience – spellwork, praise, story, song. From the breathless brevity of haiku through the humming rhythm of the long meditation the thread of hidden history runs, telling in mosaic the story of the occultist, the witch, the worshipper, the scholar and the celebrant. Like Datura, this is a work of many voices from a rich diversity of practice, each burning the wick to illuminate a piece of the Great Work. Some voices will be familiar to those readers of the first anthology, some will be new, and all are testament to a continuing dedication to the sublime and challenging work of poetic and artistic craft in our communities.
Adriano Camargo Monteiro, Adrienne J. Odasso, Alexander Cummins, Alison Leigh Lilly, Anna Applegate, Anthony Rella, Ariana Dawnhawk, Brock Marie Moore, Caroline Carver, Chris Page, Christopher Greenchild, Craig Fraser, Erynn Rowan Laurie, j/j hastain, Jenne Micale, Jennifer Lawrence, Jessica Melusine, Jimmy T. Kirkbride, Jose Leitao, Juleigh Howard Hobson, Juliet Johns, Katie Anderson, KH Solomon, Levannah Morgan, Literata Hurley, Mama Whodun, Mark Mandrake, Mark Saucier, Mark Valentine, Michael Routery, Mike Slater, Miriam Axel-Lute, Orryelle Defenstrate-Bascule, Paul Holman, Paul B.Rucker, Peter Dube, Peter Grey, Phil Legard, P. Sufenas Virius Lupus, Rebecca Buchanan, Ruby Sara, Scott Schroder, Shaun Johnson, Slippery Elm, Stuart Inman, T.Thorn Coyle, Valentina Cano, Voxx Voltair.
In addition to the rich wilderness of poetry represented in these pages, Mandragora also presents nine essays on the nature of the strange, mad, chymical wedding of poet and magic, and the occult euphoria that follows it through time and space. Throughout these pages we glimpse the ghost of Orpheus, that god-touched and wandering patron of verse, in explorations of the poet as seducer of the gods, the role of verse in ritual theatre, and the poet in relationship with the Muse. Twice we are invited to fix our hearts on the lives and works of specific voices from the history of esoteric poetry in essays on Ted Hughes and Fernando Pessoa. The prophetic voice of the poet is explored, specifically in relationship to Brigid, as is the role of poetry in the grimoire tradition, the use of the cut-up technique in poetry and magic, and the relationship of poetry to the ongoing conversation between science and occult practice. In these essays the poetic word is grounded in tradition and history, rooted in thought – a face given form and a spirit animating its limbs.
The Poet as God Seducer P.Sufenas Virius Lupus
Black Venus and Wise Hermes Phil Legard
On Cut-Up Alexander Cummins
A Spell to Awaken England Peter Grey
Magical Verse in Ritual Theatre Orryelle Defenestrate-Bascule
Burying the Poet Erynn Rowan Laurie
On Pessoa Jose Leitao
Houses of Death Jimmy T. Kirkbride
Head of Orpheus Michael Routery
Ruby Sara writes, "for me there truly is no difference on a metaphysical level between poetry and magick - they are the same movement, and you cannot have true magick without poetry (or true poetry without magick). Poetry is the language of magick, it is magick given voice and form. On a practical level, the human voice is a critical instrument in various manner of spellcraft, as is language... history bears this out thoroughly I think... and in my experience, spellcraft is hugely enhanced by applying to it the music and rhythm and articulate beauty of invocative, resonant poetry."
An online review of Mandragora can be read here