Professor Tilbury left the department in a huff, convinced his research was being disregarded, and that he had found the answer. No-one knew the question, however, and although they were concerned for his well-being, they did not for one moment suspect he would go home and summon the demons he did, or bring the world to crisis.

“No-one in their right mind would have thought it possible,” said a department spokesman. “I mean, this magic stuff is just bullshit and trickery, isn’t it? We are rational human beings, who understand everything in the 21st century.” This failure to blur the divide is symptomatic: if we cannot interpret imagery and myth, we are doomed to inadequacy.

Your own angels and demons, our own angels and demons, are leaving the universe, which is constantly expanding. Apparently this explains both the big bang and the impossibility of God, who declined to comment when approached for an interview. This is hardly unexpected though: magicians, mediums and mystics have sabotaged our interior lives and abandoned us in the desert of doubt and disbelief.

If time is an endless river, then I am drowning in the moment. If the moment is of no consequence then time is an endless river. Discuss, using impossible grey along with a hint of red shift. Avoid the black hole of doubt and appropriate the impossible as only you know how. Somewhere under Neverland is Wonderland, the Heartland, Homeland; and consolation by the bucketload. Loss has become an irrelevance.

The future is teeming with the unlikely. Secrets and lies, magic and mystery, do not work in a vacuum: you must believe and disbelieve, balance the impossibility of nothing and everything. Remember, you cannot control the world emptied of meaning, you cannot demand that doubt disappears or that truth comes over the horizon to announce itself as Absolute.

There are no excuses left, there are no questions to be asked. Drink the golden milk and swallow the prescribed medicine. Take it on the chin. Listen to the walls, listen to what the doctor says, listen to the music of the universe, look into my radium eyes. There is no true text and research is useless. No-one knows anything and no-one else cares. Professor Tilbury has pulled the curtain over our eyes; we must now turn out the lights and leave.

Left behind in the shadows, I flick through The Rough Guide to Heaven and find that the souls of the departed will never return. No clouding issues of salvation can be accommodated; there is a gulf that separates us from reality and several models of martyrdom available to us all. Magic and medicine, poetry and song, have opened a window of opportunity for a glimpse of the hereafter. It is not only the physical landscape that is changing; welcome to my ghost zoo and the embers of the fire inside.


Rupert Loydell

Taken from The Return of Doom-Headed Three, which is available from:


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