A Preview of The Psecond Pserpent Psalms

Posted: September 16, 2012 in Uncategorized

Here is the 108 pieces that will go into my next echapbook The Psecond Pserpent Psalms:

8. You Don’t Know What I Got

 “Everything worthwhile has ceased,” said the priest, handing Joelle a pamphlet. She was new to this country, raven hair under a beret, a white wool skirt, a stereotype, seeking a sitcom son to menace, embarrass unintentionally with Gallic comefuckme. The priest was handsome, tres Americain. She did not yet know that this was how they were. Live fast die young regalia, moussed hair. A Steel Reserve in one hand and the literature in the other. But the nihilism, she felt, was a product of old Europe. This was not the rock and roll hooligan way. The hooligan is a creature of passion, dying in knifefights, expecting the next day to bring better beers, better dragraces and a finer class of pussy. She had trouble respecting a man who said “everything worthwhile has ceased”.

 

“You talk like a Frenchman,” she said. It was an outright accusation, but she made it playful. She was, afterall, a roving plot device, a foreign exchange student in search of an American boy to shake up. The priest was an American boy, excitable, should have been shaken up. But instead he laughed.

 

“You know what, Frenchy? You’re alright. This isn’t like…existentialism. This is about getting back what we lost.”

 

It had always been strange to Joelle that Americans were so nostalgic. They had so little to be nostalgic about, so little history. America was a nation in its infancy, why then, was it so concerned about its past? Perhaps it paucity of history made it greedy, unwilling to relinquish the comparatively few years it had.  

 

“What have you lost?” Joelle asked, deciding to play the wideeyed foreigner so the question would not seem too hostile.

 

“You ever think about fires?” the priest asked.

 

“No.”

She was lying. She was obsessed with, aroused by fires. The mere mention of the word left her a little bit moist. But she couldn’t give that information up. It was embarrassing, unnecessary and too sensitive.

 

“Really?” asked the priest, leaning a little bit closer.

 

Joelle sighed. She loved fires and was therefore just a little bit vulnerable since they had come up in conversation.

 

“No. I lied. I am obsessed with, aroused by and ruled by fires. I crave zem as I crave food, sex and music. Fire is the master of my heart. But what does that have to do with it?”

 

The priest pulled a Lucky Strike from the pack in his pocket. He lit it. Joelle was taken aback by his audacity. She could have used a cigarette and basic etiquette dictated that he should offer her one. In her three months in the country, she had yet to encounter a savage like this one, the American parents warned her about, a greased up Rawhead and Bloodybones that menaced nice girls that strayed too far from the path. She was intrigued and concerned. The priest was indifferent.

 

“Well, Frenchy, the thing is, when He comes, when the green eye opens, all the old fires come back. Can you imagine? Every blaze that a fireman ever put out will return to the Earth and start burning again. Pure energy, destructive purifying energy. The best energy. Keeps my hotrod going. Internal motherfucking combustion. It’s a miracle. Praise be to the three eyed idol!”

 

“Oui.” She did not wish to praise the three eyed idol. She did not really know what it was, beyond hushed rumors about the cults. It seemed sort of scary, the sort of thing that made people menace foreign girls in parking garages at two am, like this guy was doing.

 

“The dead will rise and the fires will burn once more.”

 

Joelle really wished she’d remembered where she had parked.

 

“Sounds tres fantastique.”

 

The priest laughed too loud and too long.

 

“You’re funny? You know that, Frenchy?”

 

She didn’t. She had never been funny and didn’t want to start being funny.

 

“I don’t know.”

 

The priest put his hand on her shoulder.

 

“I’m sure this all very scary to you.”

 

“I do not know why you think these things about traffic lights.”

 

The priest crushed his can of Steel Reserve in his hand.

 

“It ain’t about traffic lights. He came first, then the lights. The lights are modeled after his face. And when the green opens, it all starts.”

 

“I’m sorry.”

 

“Don’t be sorry. It’s gonna be beautiful. Everything worthwhile has ceased.”

 

Joelle thought of her mother and father, of childhood, of a France that had not stifled her, of an America that she’d seen in Blackboard Jungle. She felt the weight of his words. It pushed down on the back of her neck and made her head hang.

 

“Third floor,” said the priest, “36.”

 

“I don’t believe you,” said Joelle.

 

“Lead the way,” said the priest.

 

She headed up the stairs, counting the spaces until she reached space 36, where her car was indeed parked. The priest smirked arrogantly.

 

“Wanna pay me back? Next time you see a kid playing in the road, run him down. Run him back over and think of the green eye and all those pretty fires burning again. You don’t have to do it, but you wanna. Believe me, you wanna.”

 

She wordlessly got into the car. She did breathing exercises. She told herself she had been talking to a crazy person and that everything was alright. She believed this, until the next time she saw a child playing in the street.

 

The original Pserpent Psalms of course remain available with a new intro by sci fi author and occultist Don Webb. Horror artist and writer Alan M. Clark had this to say about them:

Pserpent Psalms by Garrett Cook puts me in mind of William Blake’s “Proverbs of Hell.” But while Blake’s proverbs are an expression of the need to allow the energy and abandon of our animal nature to coexist with spiritual discipline, Cook’s psalms seem to give us the experience of doing just that, demanding consideration from both the rational mind, which seeks to make sense of the surreal passages, and the subconscious, which revels in the spontaneous dream-like quality of the writing.
 
—Alan M. Clark, author of Of Thimble and Threat: The Life of a Ripper Victim
 
If you’re interested in delving into the mysteries of The Pserpent Psalms, you can order them HERE. The second 108 pieces,  which will also be sold for 1.08, will be available later in the month. These will include a three part Jimmy Plush adventure scattered throughout. 
 
Although I will be at work doing this, I am also in need of and in search of more editing work, so if you have a manuscript and you want a quick, cheap, somewhat experienced editor familiar with a variety of genres, you can find the information you need HERE.
 
September and October will bring forth a lot of surprises, including one hinted at by the piece I just posted. Keep your eye on my Facebook page and here for more.

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