Short pieces

Jolly Roger

The first chapter of my (not quite yet) abandoned novel: Apocalypse.  3000 words.

The rattling of keys. A heavy click and the door surrenders. Ahead there is darkness and behind, the early evening sky is grey with pregnant clouds. The heavy boom of thunder. The squealing shrieks of a turning tram, grating and harsh. I sweep the door behind me and with a metallic sigh it swings until it clangs into place and the outside world is mute. I reach into my jacket pocket for my lighter. The flame offers the only light in the room. I inhale deeply. The sweet burning. A dancing curl of smoke. Home.

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Ubik (1969). My first exposure to the mind of Dick.

Essay on the novel Ubik. Word count: 5200

I heard about Dick through Robert Anton Wilson. Wilson commented that when he (Wilson) was experimenting with Crowleyan Magick techniques and passing through his Chapel Perilous, he began to receive messages from what he initially interpreted as beings from the Sirius Star System (later Wilson comments that he interpreted these messages as coming from a Great White Rabbit from County Carey, and later still he interpreted them as being the left and right hemispheres of his brain communicating with each other...). Curiously (and according to Wilson), this was around the time when Dick, also, was receiving messages from Sirius.

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Review, EssayAlexander ToumsUbik
The experiment at Herdsman Lake

Personal essay recounting an experiment in magic involving a lake, a snake and a shift in mindset.

1.     The Lake

Herdsman Lake is quintessentially Perth. From the northwest corner, you can look over the half a dozen buildings of the CBD, and from the right angle, it looks like they’re emerging from a swamp. It’s called Herdsman Lake, but really, it’s a swamp. It’s a reminder that Perth is built on swampland.

Don’t get me wrong. I love Herdsman Lake.

The first people to use this lake were the local Noongar people, the Yellagonga. They called the area Ngurgenboro.

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