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.

Saturday, June 18

45s on 33 – #80: “Good & Evil”

Ellabell regulated in pretty short order, capslock yelling at me despite her fairy sprite other realm aura, which one (meaning me, as I am the one telling this) would assume from previous mythology educations means she is chill and sweet and magical. But she was straight up yelling at me:

“WHY ARE YOU BACK HERE, RAVEN? WHERE IS REY-REY?”


“I don’t know,” I shrugged offishnessed her, “Some Heart Stars zipped me back here. Thought I’d sit around and write some sonnets or something.”

“DON’T YOU SEE THE HEART STARS POPPING? ARE YOU THICK IN THE CONSCIOUSNESS? DO YOU KNOW WHAT IS HAPPENING, YOU FOOL?”


“I don’t know.” Ellabell was being a bitch right now, all magic powers and unexplainable supernatural events aside.

“THESE HEART STARS ARE POPPING BECAUSE OF THAT FUTURE YOU THAT YOU AND REY-REY WERE GOING TO FIND. HE IS GOING TO DESTROY YOUR WORLD. THESE INSPIRATIONS DISSIPATING INTO NOTHING IS JUST THE FIRST STEP.”


I deferred and accepted my own innate weakness, or apologized and placated, or whatever, but I got Ellabell to chill out and eventually she explained it without yelling.


“All beings are good and evil, this is known. Every atom has good and evil charge to it, but also every atom gets charged by environmental immersion a little heavier good or heavier bad. Ultimately, it all balances out, mostly. But there are points where too much charge accumulates too hard in one being, and shit can get wonky. This is what has happened with the future version of you and Rey-Rey that I was gently nudging you two towards battling. He is a heavy accumulation of evil.”

“How so?”

Ellabell “ugh”ed at my denseness (and here I had been claiming I was the cerebral one between me and Rey-Rey), and snapped her little fingers. From the snapping came a visual orb, like a crystal ball but not crystal and more oblong than straight up ballin’, and it I could see myself, a little older and little greyer. I seemed to be sitting at a computer monitor, poking the keyboard in front of me. Looked like the same crappy keyboard I have now actually.

“That’s me?”

“Yes,” said Ellabell.

“What am I doing?”

“You’re a successful writer, cranking out another of your successful books, this one commissioned by a movie studio to do a one-off pulp book about their superhero characters.”


“Cool. So I’m making money off my writing. Wow.”


“Look closer,” and she flickered her fingers which zoomed us in visually. The words I was typing were boring as fuck, like just horrible horrible writing, kind of like this but even worse. But a lot of the words as they appeared on the screen vibrated with an industrial buzz – they were literal buzzwords.

“Well, the story looks stupid, but at least I’m successful, right?”

Ellabell tiddlywinked her thumbs twice and the view spun around and I could see my own eyes – blank, completely without fire, no life at all left inside. And yet somehow, my face shined more than I’d ever been able to scrub it in this life. I looked to have become some sort of shineface.

“What the fuck’s wrong with me?” I asked.

“You became a dullard. And that’s how you became successful, financially, because utilizing your dullard nature, you also were able to ignore your own innate morality and begin to produce stories that exploited the painful memories of your own exploitations.”


“But my eyes… what the fuck?”


“You take 800mg of Obedience a day. The future you developed Obedience. It helps keep your fire from burning up progress.”


“But wait, if he developed the drug, how am I using it?”

“That future you is overwhelmed with evil charge, an imbalance of good and evil to the ugliest extreme, and he is turning all his various hims, meaning you, and Rey-Rey, and infinite others, into industrial ‘creators’ for his benefit. So you have become successful in terms of economic recognition and public fame, but there is not much of what makes you You left in there.”


Good and evil, future version of me who are doing nefarious shit across multiple tendrils of time. This was some complicated shit.


“Yes,” Ellabell interjected (EVEN THOUGH THAT WAS INTERNAL DIALOGUE… WHAT THE FUCK ELLABELL?). “But you and Rey-Rey are both positively charged enough, together, that you can restore balance. But not alone.”


“Oh shit, Rey-Rey!” I thunk, then “Damn, I really am kinda thick, huh?”

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