RAVEN MACK is a mystic poet-philosopher-artist of the Greater Appalachian unorthodox tradition who publishes zines & physical books & electronic books & music & photography & digital art & just generally whatever feels necessary to survive this deluded earth thru Rojonekku Word Fighting Arts survival systems (Version 69, establish 14 Feb 1973). Comments encouraged.

Thursday, November 15

SONG OF THE DAY: Feet Start Walking



Walking away from some shit often times is just as satisfying as walking towards something. I mean, we like to apply this deluded notion of individual and collective progress, that man somehow either spiritually or scientifically has an unrealized destination as supreme being doing supreme shit, but lolol c’mon that ain’t true. I mean we can try to be better, that’s a good and noble practice, but there’s nothing scientific or religiously destined about our trajectory as a species. So you don’t always have to be moving towards something necessarily. A lot of times, shit is fucked up, and ugly, and stupid, and stifling, and life feels a little too much like death, a lot too much like you can’t breathe fully, and it makes good and perfect sense to be like “fuck this shit” and walk away from it. You don’t have to give an explanation or notice either. Fuck it. Life’s not a movie – you don’t have to make up with everybody, or tie up all the loose ends, or treat your parents with respect if they never did that to you, or be cool with friends who displayed hypocritical flaws. Walk the fuck away. Sometimes being a better person means leaving behind the metaphysical albatrosses.

freestyle sonnet #102: UPON BEING INSPIRED BY READING NAZRUL ISLAM


How to remain mystical in mechanical 
world inclined to find esoteric thought abstract 
and counter-productive? This strange tyrannical 
desire by the lords of our time to subcontract 

ev'ry minute, effort track each hour. Am I not 
still a natural being, born to imagine 
metaphysical tendrils outwards from this spot 
in space-time continuum, here to examine 

my place with inquisition? And practice jihad 
against heartless actions my brain has been trained to 
believe maintain order? This manmade order's odd 
when compared to natural fractals factored through 

math'matical outlook not trapped by base ten thought; 
over-thunk calculations always equal naught. 

TR4V3LS 4CR0SS 4 N4T10N...

travels across a nation
industriously scraped from
the Earth without much forethought

Wednesday, November 14

CVR10VS G4WKS FR0M B3H1ND...

curious gawks from behind
piecemeal fences, I stand tall
on wrong side of this order

SONG OF THE DAY: Footsteps in the Dark (screwed)


It is cold now but also I do not live in a country house with woodpile and stove this year, but instead in a city basement apartment, the shameful existence of a separated male lacking in financial security net, living in someone else’s mother’s basement. It is not as cold because I bought an $8 blanket from Roses the other week, a salmon pink color to challenge masculinity stereotypes, but my city basement apartment has gas heater, hooked up unseen connectors to city supply, and it will be silence in the apartment, and cold, and then the machine will start snortling with preparations and finally roar to life, filling my humble rented partial home with warmth.

I often feel the presence of footsteps in the hallway at night, and my children are horribly afraid of the laundry room door being open when they are with me. It is obviously some sort of portal, or there are spirits afoot. I have burned sage, and spoken the “THERE’S NOTHING LEFT FOR YOU HERE!” mantra of supernatural release, but unfortunately it looks like I have a bureaucratic ghost. Most ghosts in popular culture are malevolent or heavily involved in interfering with your life in some bizarre and reality-challenging way. I apparently am affected by a mundane ghost, one who just walks around the hall, looks around, and doesn’t really do shit. In fact, usually when I have said the mantra of supernatural release, which normally works, I can tell they just hide in the laundry room, pretending to not be there, until I forget, and then they start walking around in the hallway at night again.
With winter comes the roar of the furnace, which drowns out these ghostly footsteps in the dark, and it means I sleep better. Except I don’t, because it goes from cold and cuddled under blankets to painfully hot, and it seems difficult to find the sweet spot in between with the clunky gas furnace and decades-old thermostat. Also, I am haunted internally by my own ghosts, and failure demons, and worries and fears. So I will wake up, not sleep, pace to the kitchen down the hall, then back to bed, then back to the bathroom, then back to the kitchen, then bedroom again. I sometimes wonder if I am not already dead and I am the ghost pattering down someone else’s hallway, someone who is living an actual life, full of realized dreams and ambitions that are achievable. I’m probably not but it’s impossible to tell. Reality is never as real as people try to make you believe it is.