Issue 42 – Out of the Crypts

On one awful day
Dead stir, awaken to life
Step out of their crypts
Present themselves to the world
Overturn old certainties

By DS Davidson

Old Ladies from Hades
By Mark Hudson

The crypts have become undone,
the rise of the dead has begun.
Here come the old ladies from Hades,
they died when they were in their eighties.

Riding Harley-Davidson motorcycles;
head on fire, hearts cold as icicles.
Riding down the highway to hell,
you can hear their rebellious yell.

Come to ignite the world with fire,
a black leather jacket is their attire.
Long after their husbands had retired,
they had listened to the ultimate liar.

Their husbands died by poison in the tea,
so they hog all the money, with grandma glee.
Now they’re back with a vengeance for their cash,
and they’re flying down the highway with a flash.

Was the money hidden in a secret vault?
They tend to think it was the banker’s fault.
The account was frozen for the bankers to steal,
Now the old ladies would make their last deal.

Into the bank, they came as bank robbers,
With canes to beat up, canes to clobber.
They hypnotize the bank tellers with spells,
these old ladies from the bowels of hell.

They fill big bags with all the loot,
they get all the money, they don’t have to shoot.
Then they’ve got all the money from the account,
back to Hades, where the money doesn’t count.

Back to Hades, to give it to their master,
so he can buy away some sheep from a pastor.
God works hard, but the devil does too,
but when you are dead it’s too late to sue!


Dweller in the Hidden Chamber
(The Great Pyramid, Giza)
By Frank Coffman

Ah! They have detected my cell as last!
Compared to the millennia I have lain in wait—
Now but a short time before they delve some gate,
Some doorway to this place that has held me fast.

Far blacker than the blackness of my tomb
Have grown my Dark Spirit and my Evil Will.
They hoped these walls of lead, these tons of stone
Would keep them safe—perhaps would be my doom!
But I, Apep-Asfet, Chaos, Champion of Evil,
Have grown my plans for eons here alone.

They have forgotten why this hidden hall
Was formed, this crypt of horror without a portal.
Now dead are all the priests and mages. No mortal
Can stop the Terror, the Darkness that will befall.


Death in a Graveyard
By Harris Coverley

It seemed so sane
It seemed so sane!

Get to the party—
Get to the party!
Cut through the graveyard
Take a chance—
Take the shortcut!

And who da thought?
Who da thought it?
The ‘yard was full!
But not of guys and gals—oh no, oh no!

Goblins, ghouls, ghosts, and imps!
Not in costume—for real, for real!

Dancing, fighting, puking, biting, screaming—the real party!

They wanted us to join ‘em—
And they wanted it rough and ready!

Nasty types the lot of ‘em
We got our cuts and bruises
And one finger nearly sheared off

But Jimmy—he thought he could out-party all of ‘em!
Out-party goblins, ghouls, ghosts, and imps!
The damn bloody idiot!
Bloody idiot!

It’s all too horrible to describe in detail
But ol’ Jimmy couldn’t take it—

Legs in the air
Arms outstretched
Brains on the tombstones
Teeth in the weeds

The end result would’ve been obvious to anybody
But still, but still—

Who da thought it?
Who da thought it?
A death in a graveyard!


From the Tomb
By DJ Tyrer

Unexpected stirrings
Behind heavy stone doors
Eased slowly aside
With ominous grating sounds
Inhabitants stepping forth
Into the grey light
Of misty day
Stumbling from the tombs
Where they were laid
Others clawing up through earth
Desperate for air
Or worse
A multitude of the dead
Marching forth
Revisiting their haunts of life


The Doorway
By Frank Coffman

ina qabri ba-a-bi iptu-uma-a inakitiba-a-bi iptetu-u”
In the tomb, they opened a doorway to the Netherworld.”
(Sumerian, from The UDUG HUL*)

From Uruk, the site was several miles to the east.
A wild-wind Shamal had cleared the ancient stone,
Revealing an entrance to whose tomb? As yet unknown.
Two days after that great dust-storm had ceased—
Despite the warnings of that Zoroastrian priest—
Our team went quickly to that House of Bone.
We found more cautions on the lintel stone
In Early Sumerian….They told that an Evil Beast
Had been sealed in behind a black stone door.
Indeed the “tomb” was but a hollow vault.
No mortal remains or funerary gear
Are in that chamber, etched on walls and floor
With horrid charms. The growling made us halt,
Fill in, and rebury that place of Primeval Fear.

*[The Udug Hul: tablets of text containing chants or charms to exorcise  the “Evil Udug” —literally “Udug Evil” or “Demon of Evil”])

Issue 23 – War over Miðgarðr

twilight of the gods
clash of arms: wolf, wyrm and fire
waters swallow world

By DJ Tyrer


By David Edwards

Uppsala Runestone
carved left to right? right to left? –
secret whispers of
Bragi, god of poetry –
lays Asgard aflame.
Thor’s temper, Odin’s power,
and Freya’s beauty,
urged by shape-shifting Loki’s
deception and tricks,
burn that celestial wood.
Valkyries carry,
battlefield to Valhalla,
heroes and warriors
(“carrion fed to ravens”)
used up by heaven
in their uncounted millions
while through the ages
Norse gods, under royal mounds,
slumber forgotten.

Fires of Middle-earth
By Aeronwy Dafies

In twilit realms
Gods follow reavers’ trail
Clash of arms
Aesir blades never fail
Fires spread
Engulf Middle-earth, all the Tree
Blood flows
Drained from the veins of the free
Wolf moon
Eclipse of human domain
Gods fall
Middle-earth will never be the same


The Saga of the Gods of the North
By Harris Coverley

Across the North Sea came the Norseman’s gods
Lord Odin and the rest of the Æsir
To conquer with honour against all odds
Regardless of injury they would incur
An invasion of Britannia’s lands
And to crush its own fair gods into sand!

Gods Saxon and Celtic first did not see
For they continued to fight amongst themselves
Concerned not with that branch of Yggdrasil’s tree
Twas only when the enemy landed its elves
That Britannia’s gods came to coalition
United upon a common mission!

Belatucadros cut down brave Baldr
While Thor did burn Ialonus’s fields
Móði sheared Viridius’s alder
Mars Cnabetius smashed jötunn shields
And while blind Höðr was kept in the vague
Loki released amongst nicors a plague

Bear god Matunus mauled elf after elf
As Ankou stalked freely throughout the land
Wyrd could not predict the end herself
As gods and monsters brawled in roving bands
The common poor people’s calls unheeded
Famine came as the soil could not be seeded

The Britannic gods then brought out at last
What they thought to be their secret weapon:
Wōden—greatest fighter of recent past
How things were going he had to step in
He gathered his sword and chainmail of gold
The warrior idol—a sight to behold!

Odin and he finally clashed at Cross Fell
But on neither could mortal blow be dealth…
And yet the Norse god did see through the hell
That Wōden was in-fact but Odin himself!
All the gods then realised their terrible crime:
They were fighting themselves the entire time!

How the Aesir/Vanir War began
By Cardinal Cox

Loki said to the assembled Aesir
See there are the Vanir in their valley
See them dance? Hear the drums?
They jig with Golden Brew – Gullveig
A maiden of magical mien
Raid their ramshackle ranch
Steal her that you might enjoy her
So they rode and roamed and reached them
Where is the wondrous woman?
The raiders roughly requested
And the Vanir gave them
The flashing flask of reindeer water
Home again they poured her into a pan
Stuck in one of their ten hairy spears
Tasted her and saw their bright brother dead
So they flashed flint and struck fire
And they boiled the golden woman
Stuck in one of their ten spears bound with rings
Tasted her and saw giants breaking walls
So they boiled her a second time
Stuck in one of their ten splinter bladed spears
Tasted her and saw All Father devoured by worms
They boiled her a third time
Tasted her and called her Bright
Her sisters know her bringing trances
Revealing fates and fortunes and futures
Fair Vanir wanted weregilt for the theft
Intoxicated the Aesir stumbled forth
A battle against bushes and boulders
As much as their fearsome foes
Vanir gathered the vanquished gibbering gods
And put them in their sheepfold
Next day grey Odin swore
This seidh, this magic, is mighty
From now the bright one is my bride
No other Aesir may bed her
Even foster-brother Loki the necromancer
Is forbidden to fumblingly fornicate
With the wise woman of wishes

This began the Aesir/Vanir War


The Battle of Valhalla
By DS Davidson

Not a feast as intended
Swords drawn
Axes swung
Prideful gods take umbrage
Curses fly
Oaths made
drawn for battle
Save for violent wounds
Clashing blades
Brutal blows
Battle begins in Valhalla
Overturn tables
Strike brethren
Sacred blood stains Odin’s hall
Thor’s hammer
Loki’s lies
Each sends gods to the slaughter
Midgard and the Ash Tree tremble