Clutching my holdall, I slipped into the chantry of an early fifteenth-century chapel. It was late at night, and the only light in the chapel was provided by half a dozen flickering candles that created disturbing shadows on the walls. I was interested in the tomb of a medieval knight and his lady and although I had never felt comfortable in the presence of death, even in the daylight hours, if I had come during the day, I would have been spotted by the sacristan and asked to leave.Continue reading “The Grave’s a Fine and Private Place by Tony Dawson”
Versatur Circa Quid!
No less an authority on speaking one’s mind than Mark Twain knew that the artificial concept called Free Speech is best left to the dead. That’s why many of his franker observations on God and the human condition were held back from publication until well after Twain’s employer, Mr. Samuel Clemens, joined the ever growing legion of Spirits (which currently outnumbers the living thirty to one), in 1910. I, Judge Jasper P. Montague, Quillemender, know all about the sweet freedom of death, for I have been a member of the Spirit world eight years longer than Mr. Clemens/Twain, which means I am free to “overshare” with impunity.Continue reading “Hannah and the Homophonic: A Feeble Fable of the Fantasmagorical by Leila Allison (with a forward foreword by Judge Jasper P. Montague, Quillemender)”
Charleston’s sleepy New Town Cemetery had once been the center of a controversy. For many years Town was spelled ‘Towen’ on the fancily etched marble dedication obelisk located just inside the main gate. The unique spelling was on purpose because the wealthy widow who had donated the land for the cemetery and paid for the obelisk wanted it that way. She claimed that it was the name of the Welsh village of her birth. Despite more than a century of weathering, you can still mark her unpronounceable name on the obelisk, but, oddly, not those of the local big shots who’d presided over the cemetery’s plating in 1882.Continue reading “Towen Meeting by Leila Allison”
A gecko named Keeler escaped her enclosure about twenty minutes after Renfield had brought her home from the pet shop. Keeler didn’t care for the transparency of her new digs and decided that her happiness lay in a blended existence with the walls, furniture and such in the haunted Stoker-Belle household. You see, Keeler didn’t think of herself as a gecko; she self identified as a Karma Chameleon.Continue reading “The Karma Chameleon and the Diplomaniac: A Feeble Fable of the Fantasmagorical (Season Two Opener) by Leila Allison”
A Feeble Fable of the Fantasmagorical by Miss Renfield Stoker-Belle, Noted Supernaturalist Featuring an Appearance by Judge Jasper P. Montague, Quillemender And a Futile Forward by Leila Allison
It’s a fallow and disconsolate world in which we live. Even here at this side of reality populated mainly by Pen Names, Imaginary Friends and Fictional Characters, you’ll find more Juggalos per square inch than persons with sustainable IQs contributing to the gene pool. The pain of it all becomes clear on the day you look in the mirror and correctly suspect that the best years have gone by. You gaze into the reflection of your suddenly cautious, peering avatar and wonder what happened to the footloose, laughing face who had been looking back at you every day up through yesterday. It seems impossible that this paradoxically “new” used you has ever had an interesting thought in her life; or that she had even at one time tolerated the Juggalos–as long as they stayed upwind of her location. Continue reading “Zippy and the Zephyrling:”
Dread comes with darkness. Bar your doors and windows, and keep out the evil spirits. That’s what people say. I hide under my blankets, but Mama says they won’t keep me safe. I’m not even safe in her arms. That’s why the mare took baby Bert when he was sleeping, and the blacksmith’s wife. You never know when she might come, but Mama says no night is safe.
He plays the trumpet brilliantly on the corner of Grand and Victoria. He doesn’t look like he’s from this era. He’s impeccably dressed, from his crisply fitting suit to his smooth fedora hat. There aren’t many folks that can pull that off. He’s cooler than the freezer aisle on a sweltering summer day. He performs the type of yearning melodies that give you the goosebumps. I’ve never seen anyone put any money into his basket.
Versatur Circa Quid!
Once again my four generations removed granddaughter, Miss Leila Allison, has thoughtfully left open a file for me to brilliantly emend. Before I get to today’s subject, however, I believe that I should once again introduce myself to the readership due to what I observe to be a great diminishment in the overall intelligence of the modern day public. It is I, the splendiferous Judge Jasper P. Montague, Quillemender. I died in 1912, but shortly thereafter I returned as a Quillemender Spirit. I am housed in a ceremonial gold gilt gavel presented to me upon my retirement from the bench. I’m allowed to travel ten paces from the gavel, which is plenty close enough to where my ancestor (and current holder of my heirloom gavel), Leila, keeps her Chromebook. Succinctly, we Quillemenders alter text written by the living. In a way my noble kind are the precursor of that mindless autocorrect function that gets so many of you in trouble.
Behold Awesomenicity to the Nth: Miss Renfield Stoker-Belle
An awesomemost author should enter the page after she’s been introduced by a statement similar in purpose to the music heralding a professional wrestler. Instead of approaching the page accompanied by a noise in the key of Lowest Common Denominator, however, the awesomemost author should materialize beneath a hella descriptive bold font header, like that shown above. From here on out please consider what stands atop this opening paragraph as my calling card. I put a lot of energy into the creation of my identifying verbal riff, which shall ever more precede whatever addle-minded gibberish Ms. Allison has to offer under the Feeble Fable flag. Although I have forbidden Allison to feed me any more lines in which peculiar twists of “awesome” are featured, the ban does not extend to the awesomenistic literature I produce.
“Yesterday, upon the stair,
A little man who wasn’t there!
He wasn’t there again today,
Oh how I wish he’d go away!”
–William Hughes Mearns, “Antigonish”