Thursday 28 April 2011

Late Bloomer - Lovecraftian Sex Education

Lovecraftian Sex Education? No further description is necessary...

Sunday 24 April 2011


What more appropriate story could there be on Zombie Jesus Day (Easter Sunday) than this...

by Nick Gisburne

There are chapters in time, scarce but sweet and sublime,
When our destinies change for the better
It was on such a night, by the luminous light
Of the moon on the mountains I met her

Blessed with venomous grace, and a half-eaten face,
Her proportions were crooked, yet pleasing
Clothing spattered with stains, having hunted for brains
She was drooling and groaning and wheezing

There was blood on her teeth, from the body beneath,
From the veins of a freshly killed victim
She had started to pull at the base of the skull,
Which was split where she’d viciously kicked him

It was love at first sight, and I dreamed that she might
Feel a similar, soulless attraction
So I watched as she fed from the now-severed head,
And I thrilled at her sweet putrefaction

Though her hunger was vast, she was sated at last,
And lay back on the motionless torso
From her disfigured hips to those festering lips,
My heart ached for her then even more so

So I reached through my chest and abruptly did wrest
Through the ribs my necrotic old ticker
Though corrupt with disease, I discharged with a squeeze
Any lingering poisons or ichor

With my worm-ridden heart came a wish to impart
Passions putrid as each grisly tumour
And this organic waste, tough and toxic to taste,
Showed my helpless desire to consume her

Her eyes swivelled to mine for the very first time,
Black and bloodshot, but still in their sockets
When her leprous lids blinked, I responded, but winked,
For my spare eye was lost in my pockets

She clutched tight at my heart and bit into a part
Of the succulent, scabrous aorta
Hers were cancerous teeth - two above, three beneath -
Plainly perfect for ripping and slaughter

Steeped in sickness and death, tainted meat gave her breath
An alluring, malodorous foetor
I was dizzy with lust as a congealing crust
Of my heart blood grew thick on her sweater

I could see her succumb as she licked out the scum
From a ventricle, raw from dissection
And we both of us knew what we wanted to do
When she’d swallowed the final infection

She was shy and remote, for her delicate throat
Had been cut by a struggling stranger
But I beckoned her near, re-attached her loose ear,
And gave promise that I’d never change her

It was then that we kissed, though we both had to twist,
For our limbs were diseased and distorted
Swapping spittle and blood, we fell down in the mud,
Our vain efforts to stand soon aborted

From the dank disrepair of my pox-ridden hair,
She tore clumps with a sensuous vigour
For this ghoul, I confess, grunts were hard to suppress,
And her filth made my entrails grow bigger

With a ravenous lust she grew frantic and thrust
Frenzied fingers deep into my belly
It was almost obscene how she ripped out my spleen
And compressed it to quivering jelly

And responding, of course, with malevolent force,
I pulled hard on her ulcerous liver
It was rancid and grey, oozing pus and decay,
And the seep of its sores made me shiver

I was lost in her charms as those skeletal arms
Reached around me, my kidneys to cripple
Renal arteries ripped and together we sipped
On a slippery, sulphurous tipple

With the nails of my thumbs I slit open her lungs,
And we rolled in the tar and the cancer
Now astride me, her groans, and the crack of dry bones
As she haemorrhaged, highly enhanced her

On that cannibal night, in the carnage and blight,
Our disgusting devotion grew stronger
We had eaten our fill, and would both be there still
If our smaller intestines were longer

We dismembered till dawn, and the mouldering morn
Found us wrapped in a visceral blanket
Mixing lymph, blood and bile in a mixture most vile,
As a tribute to love we both drank it

Vital organs we’d shared, so we hunted and snared
Two unwilling but generous donors
And my love was now blessed with a silicone chest,
Which for both of us came as a bonus

If there’s ever a chance for a taste of romance,
Find a zombie and woo her and wed her
Ever hungry she’ll stay, but there’s no easy way
To find someone who’s stronger or deader

She’s the love of my life, my insatiable wife,
And we shuffle in curious manner
On our victims we feed, and together we bleed
She has eaten my heart - Zombrianna

The full text of Zombrianna can also be found on my DeviantArt page.
Stock image used in this video:
Marcus Ranum -

Wednesday 20 April 2011

The Conqueror Worm

Make sure you watch the video at the end of this post, which tells the whole story with animated cut-out paper puppets. Incredible work.

The Conqueror Worm
by Edgar Allan Poe

Lo! 'tis a gala night
Within the lonesome latter years!
An angel throng, bewinged, bedight
In veils, and drowned in tears,
Sit in a theatre, to see
A play of hopes and fears,
While the orchestra breathes fitfully
The music of the spheres.
Mimes, in the form of God on high,
Mutter and mumble low,
And hither and thither fly-
Mere puppets they, who come and go
At bidding of vast formless things
That shift the scenery to and fro,
Flapping from out their Condor wings
Invisible Woe!

That motley drama- oh, be sure
It shall not be forgot!
With its Phantom chased for evermore,
By a crowd that seize it not,
Through a circle that ever returneth in
To the self-same spot,
And much of Madness, and more of Sin,
And Horror the soul of the plot.

But see, amid the mimic rout
A crawling shape intrude!
A blood-red thing that writhes from out
The scenic solitude!
It writhes!- it writhes!- with mortal pangs
The mimes become its food,
And seraphs sob at vermin fangs
In human gore imbued.

Out- out are the lights- out all!
And, over each quivering form,
The curtain, a funeral pall,
Comes down with the rush of a storm,
While the angels, all pallid and wan,
Uprising, unveiling, affirm
That the play is the tragedy, "Man,"
And its hero the Conqueror Worm.

Monday 18 April 2011

The Nameless City

The Nameless City by H P Lovecraft has a building tension that quite literally had me gripping my seat as I recorded it. I'd not read the story before, so as an experiment I decided to read it for the first time as I was speaking into the microphone. When I'm recording a long story I tend to wave my arms around when it gets to the dramatic parts, just to get myself more involved in the story, but that sometimes disrupts the recording itself, so instead I held onto the seat of my chair to prevent this. By the time I'd finished, without realising it I'd put so much strain on my arms that they ached for hours afterwards! Not knowing the story beforehand hopefully added a little something to the telling of it - I was discovering it just as its narrator was also seeing the events within it unfold.

From what I know of the story, this is the first of Lovecraft's Cthulthu Mythos stories, so it all descends into unspeakable madness from this point forwards!

Link to full text of the story.

Thursday 14 April 2011

Castles of Cardboard

Castles of Cardboard was one of the more challenging poems I've written, not because of a lack of ideas, but because of the themes it covers. I found myself so emotionally attached to the character in the story that, knowing how it would all end, it was a struggle not to cry at times. And at times I just gave in and did it. I was certainly hoping that some of that emotion would translate into the words of the poem, and I'm optimistic that that's what happened.

The reading/recording was extremely straightforward, which for me is a sign that I've done everything right - as I'll probably explain in later blog posts, sometimes I find the process of recording and editing a total nightmare. Not so with this one.

My inspiration for this was quite a well-known story, though if you haven't listened to this already, revealing that would be a huge spoiler, so I won't mention it here. Certainly towards the end it should become apparent.

Castles of Cardboard
by Nick Gisburne

Her face isn’t one you would notice
And you’d pass with no more than a glance
But she’s looking at you
For a hint, just a clue
That perhaps she has half of a chance
And you’re stopped by those eyes
Filled with sorrow and sighs
“Please, I know what I say will seem strange
I need help - can you spare me some change?”

So how many times have you said it?
“Not today” or “I can’t” or just “No”
You can bet she’s heard worse
Every possible curse
That the many she asks can bestow
But she tries all the same
Because this is no game
If she doesn’t there’s nothing to eat
So she begs in the snow-covered street

You give her a pittance. Feel better?
Do you think that’s the help she most needs?
And to you what’s the cost
Of the coins you just tossed?
You’re so filled with the warmth of good deeds
She’s forgotten and gone
And your life carries on
When you gave her that miserly sum
Did you notice? Her fingers were numb

At sunset the shops are all closing
Busy customers rush to their homes
If they notice her there
They avoid her, aware
These cold streets are the places she roams
Doesn’t one of them know
She has nowhere to go?
But at least she is free now, cut loose
From the past, from the years of abuse

In fairytales step-mothers beat you
But then step-fathers, they can do worse
And the princess of course
On her magical horse
Unaware of this menace, this curse
Soon discovers the cost
Is her innocence, lost
And the monster, the source of her fears
Brings her tales full of sadness and tears

She couldn’t tell, nobody, ever
But her Grandma knew something was wrong
She was told of a place
Where a princess could face
Any evil with courage made strong
And she learned how to build
Magic castles and thrilled
To explore and to venture inside
In a place she felt safe and could hide

And building tall castles of cardboard
With their walls rising strong to the sky
In old boxes she hid
And their magic undid
All the hurt, and her eyes, almost dry
Could see wonderful things
Giant creatures with wings
She could soar through the clouds, to the sea
And in castles of cardboard be free

The castles were never defeated
But her Grandma surrendered at last
And the words that she spoke
As the young girl’s heart broke
Were remembered long after she’d passed
“Always live for your dreams
And whenever it seems
You are lost, think of me.” And she smiled.
“Now’s the time for us both to leave, child.”

With nowhere to raise up her castles
The girl formed a desperate plan
Her life here was done
She decided to run
To escape from the monster, the man
To the city she stole
And her singular goal
Was to find a safe place of her own
And to build a new castle, alone

But cities aren’t safe for a princess
For they harbour a dangerous breed
In the light of the day
She was no easy prey
But the night comes with terrible speed
Filthy strangers would hurl
Foul abuse at the girl
Till in some ruined alley or street
She’d pile boxes and make her retreat

Today came the snow, and her castles
Are all broken and twisted and torn
Fallen cardboard her bed
She now rests her young head
On their ruins and tries to stay warm
But the bitter winds bite
Through the long winter night
And she finds no defence from the cold
As its long, icy fingers take hold

And what of the money you gave her?
What cuisine was it lavished upon?
Do you think it went far?
One small piece of a bar
Of a chocolate something, now gone
She lies hungry and weak
And is longing to speak
To the woman who’ll calm her despair
To the woman she knows is not there

She paces around like a tiger
So determined to conquer the chill
But this tiger is sick
Cold and hunger so quick
To extinguish her strength, yet she still
Thinks of Grandmother’s face
And is granted the grace
Of sweet moments of sleep, which she takes
But the wind soon returns and she wakes

She pulls something out of her pocket
An old lighter she’d found in the street
And she pleads for a flame
As she whispers the name
“Grandma, please warm my fingers and feet”
From the wheel spins a spark
Leaping out of the dark
And a flicker of light in the breeze
As she sinks to the ground, to her knees

The pale amber halo glows brightly
And she stares at its magical light
Twisting shapes that she sees
From her memory, trees
Rising up to imperious height
Grandma sits on a stump
And to see the girl jump
You’d imagine she might even fly
But the sun disappears from the sky

Her shivering fingers have faltered
Without colour or feeling they fail
But those faces she’d seen
And the trees - they had been
Just a glimmer, one part of the tale
So she has to see more
And she searches the floor
To find something to kindle the flame
Digging deep in the filth without shame

But water and snow have spared nothing
Just a precious few boxes survive
But she needs them tonight
For inside them she might
Keep her fragile young body alive
But perhaps she won’t miss
Only one, and if this
Is the price for a glimpse of her dreams
She will pay, and pay gladly it seems

She tears her old castle to pieces
And the pitiful piles on the floor
Are two chances to burn
To let Grandma return
But she cannot and dare not spare more
Small but certain, her smile
Fills with hope; the first pile
Takes the flame and swells up to a blaze
And its shapes reveal glorious days

The beach is their pebble-strewn playground
Skipping stones out for miles ’cross the waves
Fair and young, grey and old
Their adventures are bold
As they splash in the pools, in the caves
A warm hand holds her tight
As the day turns to night
And a crimson sun sets on the sea
And the flames fade to ash and debris

These visions, so vivid and vibrant
Fill the girl with great joy, but such pain
For the bitter-sweet sight
Of her loved one this night
Brings a yearning to hold her again
It can never be so
And the lighter is low
It can bring only one final dream
As she summons the flame her eyes gleam

It catches a corner and flickers
But then sputters and hisses and dies
For the cardboard was wet
A reality yet
To betray itself deep in her eyes
She says nothing, quite numb
But is soon overcome
With a sickening ache of despair
“Grandma, please! Won’t you show me you’re there?”

A swirling chill rushes around her
Chasing ashes high into the air
And one ember descends
Still aglow, it extends
Its ephemeral life to her care
And her whispering breath
Saves its fire from death
And she nurtures this gift from above
Just as someone had once shown her love

It grows, and burns ever more surely
As she finds the dry tinder she needs
So intent is her gaze
She forgets now to raise
Up her eyes to the scene her flame feeds
Till a murmur, a word
In the shadows is heard
And an old woman whispers her name
As if drawn to the flickering flame

A voice, then a face, though still distant
But this shade is no ghost of the past
Through the smoke, through her eyes
Through the kneeling girl’s cries
Her Grandmother returns now at last
And the old woman’s smile
Now approaches, for while
The flames grow she will shelter the girl
But the smoke starts to thicken and curl

The last of her castle of cardboard
Burns low with a guttering light
And its princess now screams
As her Grandma it seems
Will return to the shadows of night
In her grief and despair
She looks wildly to where
The dry boxes, the last of their kind
Pull a bare thread of hope from her mind

She drags them with reckless abandon
And she builds up the fire once more
Till it burns with such heat
That her heart is complete
And she dances and circles the floor
For her Grandma is there
Tying bows in her hair
And her tears are of joy as she weeps
Till in Grandmother’s arms, she now sleeps

They found her in cinders and ashes
Near a circle of steps in the snow
Yet the chill could not chase
The warm smile from her face
And what wonders she saw none could know
Far from hunger or cold
Though she never grew old
Never cared for a child of her own
Still her journey was not made alone

She burned all her castles of cardboard
And their walls blazed far up to the sky
The old boxes are gone
But their magic lives on
And her beautiful eyes never cry
They see wonderful things
Giant creatures with wings
And she soars through the clouds, to the sea
And in castles of light she is free

The full text of Castles of Cardboard can also be found on my DeviantArt page.

What am I doing here?

I've been itching to do this for a while now, and finally couldn't hold myself back any longer. My YouTube account, Gisburne2000, is coming along nicely and has a generous number of readings of classic poetry and prose, plus readings of my own work, but it wasn't enough. YouTube is just video/audio. That's it. There's no good way of posting thoughts, feelings, ideas, interesting links, or any of the dozens of other things which occur to me as I'm researching, recording, editing, writing, or just generally thinking about my day.

A blog lets me do that. So here I am.

I will of course be adding any newly created videos to this blog, but I don't want to add all the existing ones en masse because the place will be swamped. I may add them one at a time, now and again, and perhaps add a bit of commentary to them as well. I have no definite plans for that, so I'll see how it goes.

One thing to be aware of: I ramble! I want to say everything and anything when I get started, and I don't stop until I do. So I'd better get out of here before you get my life story and/or what I had for breakfast.


Too late.

Welcome to my blog!

Tuesday 5 April 2011

The Beeble of Crispy Dash Night

The Beeble of Crispy Dash Night
A Poe Pum in Four Spits

by Nick Gisburne

Spit the Mould

Wilt thou listen, my screebers? Give hark to my tale
To the Beeble of Crispy Dash Night
Though thy bibs be full glutted, nogs wizzled with ale
Fuddle in, slink the door, grim the light

In the tweeny of Nazbeth there wimpled a maid
Thence to Maisy an Ungle did tweeve
With a bazzle of brillums and glitting cascade
Quoth the Ungle, “Sweet Maisy, believe!”

“I have swung hence from Higgins, beyond the poo sky
And bring missage and bruise from Lord Spod
Thou shalt bear him a babbums, Spod’s gravy, his fry”
And he sniggled her miff with his rod

Maisy’s hubbling, young Slow-Deaf, nebbed aught of this plan
Though his peeps spied the spand in her girth
So on quinkies they jungled to Bethum-ham-han
To the sween of the bab’s Viking birth

’Twas a nox like no other, full bust were the nins
For their squint they could find not a jume
Till a rundly old keepman gave solace and grins
In the stubble, where mookers did loom

Slow-Deaf’s gaze was sore fuzzled as Maisy did squat
With the babbums the Ungle foretold
From betwixt her spread neggies the Younger Spod shot
Leaving mama’s bare miff wincey cold

So she papped him with widdling and gayed him in clay
’gainst the fristious, frozbinum night
Then anuncified longly (the keepman did say)
“Here is Cheeses! What cradish delight!”

Spit the Bacon Scent

’Top the hillard o’er Bethum lay sheppies at seat
Heaping switch on their barlums all eve
While the lums gave good nibble, the sheps nitched their feet
For the fristing kite gave them much grieve

As they tivelled their hookies and siddered the sky
In the carp nest flished dizzy bee light
And with clangitass grunder, from Higgins on high
Zimmed the Ungle of Spod into sight

“Shigger not,” quoth the Ungle, full nebbing their drib
But they shiggered anon for a tweam
“Tip thy lugs,” quoth again he, “and ganter thy nib”
“Hear the noz that I fling all abeam”

And he spooked them of Cheeses, of Maisy, and Spod
For the gravy was Ding among Den
When the sheppies paid quizit, the bab was a-nod
For the timmo showed leet (almost ten)

“’Tis the gravy,” they chummered “All Hamish the Ding!”
And they booed on their tummocks and whupped
Unto Maisy their hankus was dacious and fring
For the Viking that no hum had tupped

Lo, the sheppies were jibbous, for this was their Sav
Come to nurkle each swimmer with paste
And for Cheeses their woodchip was lampus and clav
Taking noz to their hillard in haste

Spit the Worms

Now a spinkly new brillum grew daz in the skee
Glimpsed by yeastily mung, rolled and pies
Thrice-fold beardical duffoes cast peeps to the pea
And did stromigonomicalise

In their scrillies was writtled a predicatil
And its tulligal tex gave exhort
“Let us chum,” sang the duffoes, “and follow the brill”
“’Tis a sign of tremungulous port”

And to fingle this kinko, the wisdial mung
Took a jungle Joslamapam way
To the cratto of Beebod, its roolious kung
Whose great luggies tipped all they did say

“We be strommers, O Beebod, in chaz of yon brill”
“Seeking aud with bo-babbums anew”
“Dost the gravy lie hither? Give shuft if thou will”
“Haze the tod - flymow Ding, lawnmow Doo!”

But to Beebod their rattle gave grumious frum
And to lucify chowder he furred
“I would trot to this bo-ding. Whence backard ye come”
“Bring me geopositional word”

Soon the mung rivved in Bethum, most hulio night
Yet confangoed they fingled him still
Till the brillum, full dazzy, the stubble did light
And to Cheeses the duffoes did nil

Bringing spits full and splendif, trogged long on their germs
Each a primmertag, spensivo tring
’Twas three spits they did offal: mould, bacon scent, worms
And in jummilai woodchip did sing

On the retinal jungle the mung paid no stop
And to Beebod spock nutterly void
’Twas the Ungle gave tippy of Beebod’s vile chop
To the neddles of Beth’s gravy boid

That the bab was in piddle young Slow-Deaf took drum
Quick to Egg-Wiped the fammo did traip
Now the Nitty Vit Stirry falls ’culiar mum
Not a soss can we grimble or scrape

Spit the Beeble

’Tis a Beeble, good screebers, a mitty, no more
For this end of a leg is full fict
Cummerbund to thy sancty, bliv not this be jen
Let not relly-ginitis afflict

Mayhap aye there be Maisy, and Slow-Deaf the hub
And a babbums - such gravies be norm
But from Higgins, an Ungle, some wingular chub?
How canst bliv in this follious gorm?

Banish thunks to its truvy, prof podger none zist
Unto Viking a fant was ne’er gat
Though her miff be well tiggled, the cert lay atwist
Nay, not Spod, atop Slow-Deaf yon sat

Not a maid but a mussy, not Viking but vix
Yea, in shamulous trot they did germ
Venting hushifal sea crows a Beeble might fix
And discrepiant babbums confirm

And the sheppies? Thrice addled, a skunkifo crew
With cold mungo saw gain to the plan
Further witterling dunkos, apaid and abrew
Stood as duffoes and stubble keepman

And to Beebod? No scrillies give writtle to this
Though in hissy was writtified much
Yet the Beeble tripped speedo, from kisser to kiss
And now duncified churlkins bliv such

Be ye not such a churlkin, ’nounce fully the yarm
Cast all peeps to the mooker-dun sight
Of the nonsico mitty, most twaddifal barm
In the Beeble of Crispy Dash Night