RAVEN MACK is a mystic poet-philosopher-artist of the Greater Appalachian unorthodox tradition. He does have an amazing PATREON, but also *normal* ARTIST WEBSITE too.

Friday, May 21



Rev. Utah Smith got the nickname “the Two Winged Preacher” because of his evangelical showmanship. He was from Shreveport, Louisiana, and became a traveling evangelist for the Church of God in Christ, holding court in tent revivals, banging out songs on an electric guitar, wearing a giant pair of angels wings, and even eventually having a bunch of ropes and pulleys hooked up so he could fly around while performing. At his peak, he did other wild shit like preaching sermons from inside a casket. Strangely though, considering he was most active in New Orleans, and from Shreveport, he had been buried in a hometown cemetery in an unmarked grave. Regional music blog dorks uncovered this information, and were shocked, so crowdfunded getting him a proper grave marker, which he now has, that says “Elder Utah Smith – Electric Guitar Evangelist”. That’s pretty nice.
I had a real formative time in my teen years, fucking around in a trailer with my dad and uncle that me and my dad shared but my uncle was always around. My uncle killed himself a couple years later, but has a drag racing-style funny car doing a burnout on his grave marker. My dad died a few years later, and he has a chainsaw on his. These were the images chosen by family members who were paying for that shit that closely identified with the spirit of them. (It should be noted, we have kept a horseshoe on top of my dad’s grave ever since too. Sometimes people move it around into a different way, leaning on some shit, or however, but any time I go there, I always make sure it’s making a ringer around the dumbass thing you put plastic flowers in. My dad would want to be throwing ringers.)
I often wonder about what people might think represented me to put on a grave marker. But I also think have it pretty much set I’m gonna get cremated and have my ashes scattered around the 69th mile marker of the Rivanna line, right by the James River. I mean, I don’t have any legal papers that say that, but I wrote a poem about it, and printed it up and made everybody who needed to know had seen it. That’s as legal as shit I’m gonna do likely will get when it comes to paperwork.

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