•May 22, 2016 • Leave a Comment

beer bottle



“Two Dollar May” would fuck anybody

for two dollars,

that being the price of a bottle of beer

at the time.


Two Dollar May was ugly and fat

and definitely somewhat on the demented side

but her customers weren’t picky,

and they weren’t pretty either;

They were the usual sort of inner-city scumbags

and bar-rats that you found back then

inhabiting seedy public-bars

of semi-derelict dives;

Fat, failed gamblers afraid to go home

to their frigid, nagging wives;

ancient alcoholics and boarding house loners;

aging thugs who once dreamt of being criminals;

the polio-crippled dwarf that sold newspapers on the corner,

these were Two Dollar May’s clientèle

in the main, this was her World,

the only intrusion perhaps

the occasional paralytic College student

on a despicable “Dare”, jeered on by a leering 

mob of drunken “mates”,

nice middle-class boys from private schools

down slumming it with the proles..

caxyton st hotel 1888

Two Dollar May lived around the corner

from the pub

in a dank, dilapidated boarding house

where she took her customers

to a bottle-filled room,

where every empty bottle

was an ashtray.


Two Dollar May fed stray cats.


Once upon a time, they say

she used to be called “One Dollar May

but then they put up the price of beer

so she became Two Dollar May instead

so she could cover the cost of a can

of cat food as well.

caxpon new name

But this is decades past.


The Suburb has been gentrified

and the tarted-up pub now over-flows

with drunken yuppies on the weekends.

The old boarding-house burned down

long ago, clearing the way

for “inner-city renewal”

and a tower block

of “luxury studio apartments”.


Two Dollar May is dead now.


All of her customers are dead too.


I don’t know what they do

with pauper’s ashes,

but I’d like to hope they put May’s

around the Roses

growing in the Botanical Gardens,

or a quiet park somewhere,

scattered gently around soft, rich beds

of sun warmed soil,

surrounded by colour and scent.


Yes, it’s a pretty thought,

but knowing the way things are

I guess

they probably just ended up as landfill

or flushed down a drain

like the rest,

Two Dollar May.

beer bottle bvrokewn


soulowner part 1

We’ll be back with SQUAREY! -“Soul Owner Part 2 in a moment,

but first, a word from our sponsor..

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The Reverend Hellfire is a practised Performance Poet

President of the Kurilpa Institute oif Creativity Inc.,

and an ordained Minister of the Church of Spiritual Humanism

AND the Church of the Universe.

AKA., The “Shock-Jock” of the Brisbane Poetry Scene.



•May 15, 2016 • Leave a Comment

-german-soldiers-execute young communist

Prequiem for a Poet


“Oh dear..I think I’m turning into a God!” –last words of Vespasian,

Emperor of Rome, subsequently deified.


Will I crumble and crack when it happens

when they give me the terrible news,

or contemplate calm as a stoic and smile

as though merely just slightly amused.


Will I weep like a woman

or cry like a child,

give in to vile ravings

both vulgar and wild,

will I pound on the wall

or go run down the hall

or Party till closing time

and go out in Style.


Will I say something Witty,

and preferrably pithy

so people remember my Name,

or just silently nod

like an inscrutable god

(the effect will be somewhat the same).


Yes I’m sure I will joke when it happens

or make up some terrible pun,

for the truth is I fear, when the Gallows are near

it just brings out my strange sense of Fun.



If you can’t make a Joke

when you’re facing your Death,

my dear Friend I do fear,

that you’re wasting your breath.


"..and tho this is my first execution I'm sure I'll soon get the hang of it. But seriously folks.."

“..and tho this is my first public execution I’m sure I’ll soon get the hang of it. But seriously folks..”


twinkle twinkle


May 2016 final web handbill V2


Greetings from the Reverend Hellfire

The Reverend Hellfire is a practised Performance Poet,

President of the Kurilpa Institute of Creativity Inc.,

and an ordained Minister of the Church of Spiritual Humanism

AND the Church of the Universe.

Will validate parking tickets.



•May 8, 2016 • Leave a Comment

In honour of Mothers Day, Sunday Sermons reprints this classic Sermon.

Casual Guy

Speaking at my Mothers’ Funeral


Ah the lies we tell at Funerals,

the things that are never said!


I am my family’s heart and tongue

but they trust neither one,

afraid the “Bad Seed” will say something


or cause an ugly scene,

they prefer the paid-for cut and paste platitudes

of some “Certificate-III” qualified Celebrant,

and to hide their hypocrisy

behind bland and polite facades.

Let the lawyers loose later

to tie up the loose ends. They want

nothing messy or uncomfortable now.

They prey for a quick and clinical ceremony

and a swift return to business as usual.


The Celebrant has been secretly instructed

to try and limit my turn at the microphone,

but I am a poet with over twenty years experience

of people trying to get me off a stage

before I’m good and ready,

so she has no hope at all.

I look out. There are faces there so terrified

of what I might know or do or say

that I don’t know whether to laugh or cry.

Instead I ignore them and I start to sing.*


I sing my own loss and sorrow

for the poor, lost soul that was my Mother.

Birds gather at the doorway and windows to listen.

I sing to the birds.

The silence shouts.

Only my daughter weeps.

The bad-tempered Celebrant publicly rebukes me

for taking too long,

swiftly winds up the show

and stalks off.


Later there is tea and scones on the lawn.

I feed my scones to the magpies and butcher birds and crows.

The sullen staff tell us we have to move on, there’s a big

funeral on next with a hundred and fifty people

and our tiny affair is taking too long.


My family leaves making

insincere promises to stay in touch,

get the kids together, etc. etc.

I wave goodbye, knowing

I will never see any of them

ever again.



motherhood Jpig


reverend profile red

The Reverend Hellfire is an example of an anaerobically respiring organism

which alcoholically ferments. A range of different enzymes reduces these molecules

to ethanol and carbon dioxide.



•May 1, 2016 • Leave a Comment


Australia; Then and Now


The Country I was born in has disappeared.


I have mixed feelings about this.


Even though I often despised that Country

and generally felt like a stranger living there,

nontheless, I sometimes find myself afflicted

with an unaccountable nostalgia.


The familiar buildings that served as landmarks

have largely been torn down

and replaced with ugly, anonymous towers,

Yes, the very landscape itself has changed.

and the inhabitants who lived there once

have mostly died away, only a dwindling band

of old timers remembers a Superannuated Past

the Young have no Interest in Saving.

Even it’s Currency has disappeared, now

different denominations bearing different kings

change hands, old Customs are forgotten

the complexions of the Faces in the Street

are different too.

Gough handing soil back to Vincent lingiari

The common language meanwhile

has altered almost beyond recognition,

as though debased like a counterfeit coin

made from cheap alloy,

where U Xprss yrslf in 240 character soundbytes.

It jostles for turf on the street

with strange, immigrant tounges,

and from their intercourse inevitably

new bastard languages will arise.


I live in a different Country now.

Only the flag and name remain the same.

Like a shop with Under New Management


Open 4 Bu$ine$$

signs in the windows,

whilst up above the awning,

an old shop-hoarding sign bears a different name

that they haven’t got around

to painting over yet.

boxing kangaroos

Australia 2016,

We are not the sum of our parts,

We are fractured and fragmented,

We are not one Nation State

indivisible under God. We

are merely a series

of overlapping Administrative Zones

policed by bankers

where everything breaks down

to Ones and Zeros.


And in a World where everyone

is reduced to Statistics,

You will count for Nothing.

blek hawk




Greetings from the Reverend Hellfire

The Reverend Hellfire is a practised Performance Poet,

President of the Kurilpa Institute of Creativity Inc.,

and an ordained Minister of the Church of Spiritual Humanism

AND the Church of the Universe.

You can’t judge a Cook by its’ blubber


and some days are good days

•April 24, 2016 • Leave a Comment




..and some days are good days,

you know what I mean?

Just in a quiet way,

nothing special but

the weather’s fine

and a breeze is blowing

that lifts your spirits

high into that blue, blue sky.

The Bills have all been paid (for now)

no bastard bothers you on the phone

and your obligations have all been met,

while the next days’ problems seem to fall

well within your skill set.

Yes, you’ll be able to deal with it all..




ignore your diminishing

sense of responsibility,

declare today a non-public holiday

and tell yourself that you

and you alone deserve it.

Put your feet up,

have a coffee and a smoke,

and waste a few more golden, glorious hours.


Later you can stroll round the garden,

if you want, and sniff the roses,

or go feed ducks down at the park.

Or wait for the Moon to come up.

Whatever. It doesn’t matter.

Some days are good days.

It just happens like that.


Greetings from the Reverend Hellfire


double trubble


April 2016 handbill with border



The Reverend Hellfire.. Humanity’s last hope against the Rise of the Machines!



•April 17, 2016 • Leave a Comment

bar code eye

Urban Haiku


Tic, tic, tic, tic, tic..

Some days I feel like a Bomb.

Tic, tic, tic, tic, tic.


wind up bomb


the good vapyre jpig


April 2016 handbill with border


reverend profile red

The Reverend Hellfire is a practised Perfomance Poet,

President of the Kurilpa Institute of Creativity

and an ordained Minister of the Church of Spiritual Humanism

AND the Church of the Universe.

Do not operate near open flames. Use only as intended.


D.I.V.O.R.C.E..Miley & Me Pt.5

•April 10, 2016 • Leave a Comment

mileycyrus with butterflu wings

Miley & Me, Pt 5:


I‘d just finished my poetry reading at a local Cafe and had slipped out the back for a quiet smoke and a moment of meditation, when I was suddenly confronted by two large, hostile gentlemen in suits.

Naturally assuming them to be Police, (or just possibly ASIO) I automatically swallowed the joint I’d just lit.

A wasted effort, for as it turned out, I’d scarred my oesophagus for nothing. They weren’t the Police out to arrest me at all! They merely clubbed and tasered me into a semi-conscious stupor and tossed me into the boot of a car. I think it might have been a Commodore.

Thereafter followed a long, somewhat uncomfortable journey, but no worse than flying economy class really, and it did give me time to reflect on my situation. It also gave me time to smoke the back-up “emergency” joint I’d hidden in my boot. (The irony of actually being in a “boot” myself whilst I smoked it was not lost on me.)

It soon grew very stuffy in the confined space but I had vague hopes that the sight of a shiny, black Commodore speeding down the highway with clouds of pot smoke billowing behind it might attract some attention and hopefully intervention.

But no-one rescued me and I was left alone with my thoughts.


I must admit, I’d been expecting something like this to happen. Because “this”, I quickly realised, was nothing

 more than a subtle approach from the all powerful CYRUS CORPORATION to discuss my marital status.

For as regular readers of Sunday Sermons would know,

through a series of inexplicable and extremely unlikely events, I had ended up marrying the troubled young pop star Miley Cyrus in a secret Wedding in a ruined Balinese Temple. This Wedding was tragically interrupted at it’s climax by the combined might of the Indonesian Tactical Response Group and Billy Ray Cyrus leading an attack squadron of CYRUS CORPORATION helicopters.


Mileys wedding dress was distinctive, to say the least

Since then I had not seen my blushing young bride, but I had, like all the rest of the world, kept track of her various escapades, including her recent plans to marry some minor actor or Pop non-entity whose name escapes me.

Naturally this had me speculating on the legality of such a union, given that the blushing bride might technically be considered to be Mrs Miley Cyrus-Hellfire in some Jurisdictions. Clearly the same thoughts had created rumblings deep within the bowels of the CYRUS CORPORATION, and now someone had been delegated to deal with the mess.


Thus we come to the discussion which occurred some hours later with myself, the large gentlemen previously introduced, and a lawyer from The Corporation, a smug, self-satisfied, office drone with immaculately manicured fingernails. I hated him immediately. I’ve never been able to keep mine clean.


“So Jerry, you’re in a lot of trouble..”,

the lawyer led off with his opening gambit.

“My name’s not Jerry”, I told him.

“Yeah..we were told you’d say that”.

Negotiations quickly skimmed over the trivial question of Identity, and onto more important matters.

They wanted me to sign a bit of paper.

I wanted money to do so.

They didn’t want to give me any, and were hoping to bluff,

bully and badger me into signing their piece of paper.


“It wasn’t even a real wedding”, he jeered

“Which is why you want me to sign your Balinese divorce papers I suppose”, I countered.

“The wedding wasn’t even consummated”, he insisted, “the helicopters interrupted.”

“Oh there was plenty of consummation”, I assured him, “it just took place before the wedding. Miley has very old-fashioned attitudes in that regard.”

This went on for quite a while, till I started noticing a weird vibe to the proceedings. Well..weirder than what you might reasonably expect from this sort of situation.

My interrogators seemed nervous and strained to me, they avoided many of my questions, stuck religiously to their ridiculous script and..Ah!

I had a Flash.


“Miley’s listening to this right now, isn’t she?” I suddenly put my Insight to them.

Their faces went rigid, but a tiny, involuntary flicker of the eyeballs directed me to a video camera located in the upper right corner of the room.

“Hi Baby!” I waved at the Camera.

Our love was too pure to be contaminated by sordid money squabbles

Our love was too pure to be contaminated by sordid money squabbles

“Don’t Baby Me, Jerry!”, I heard her muffled voice screeching from behind the flimsy office walls, “You never really appreciated me!!”

“Are you in the next room?” I asked.

“NO!”, she shouted and thumped

the other side of the wall for emphasis.

Eventually I persuaded her to continue our conversation with both of us being in the same room, and we left the lawyer to gnaw his immaculately manicured nails and the security guys to pop their knuckles and practise “tough guy” poses in the mirror. Meanwhile we discussed the finer details of our upcoming divorce, like two civilised human beings.

This apparently involved snorting copious amounts of cocaine.

But despite the obviously enormous expenditure she was willing to make on recreational powders, nonetheless, I felt,

she was being unaccountably stingy to me.

“I want you to be happy”, I Weaseled, “Don’t you want me to be happy too? Having lots of money might help make me happy. Well, as happy as I could be without you, of course, Sweetie”.


But my smooth talking blandishments were getting me nowhere. Possibly the presence of her new Intended had a dampening effect on my pleas. Not that he said anything. He just stood in the corner, shaking slightly, his black enormous eyes fixated the whole time on Miley. He kind of reminded me of a neurotic chihuahua. I had to fight the urge to make “Ksshh!” noises whilst cracking an imaginary whip.


After some listening to her shrieking a stream of non-sequiters and denunciations, I decided to try another tack..

“Yeah”, I murmured,” PINK said you’d be like that..”

WHAT! What did you say!”, Miley shrieked, eyeballs rolling like an old war-horse suddenly hearing the bugles’ strident call, “That Pink Bitch said Whaatt!!?

“Oh nothing..forget it”. I demurred..”though she might have implied you were too cheap to pay me off properly”,

I insinuated.

“That PINK bitch called me Cheap?! “she shrilled,

totally outraged.

“Well, “cheap whore” I think was the actual phrase used, but yes, the emphasis was definitely on your cheapness“.

Miley-Cyrus-smokes cigar

Well, invoking the name of her old show biz bete-noir PINK, for whom she had a deep but unaccountable hatred, proved to be a winning stroke that shortened negotiations considerably and soon found me a richer man and Miley married to someone else, whose name, for the moment, still escapes me.


And so Miley walked out of my life for the last time,

trailing in her perfumed wake her hapless new husband.

I looked at him thoughtfully for a moment. Poor bastard, perhaps I should say something encouraging, I thought.

So as he scurried out the door like a well trained poodle, I caught his eye and smiled in my friendliest fashion.

“Bye.. Jerry“, I called.

He gave a little involuntary shudder then, I was pleased to note.

It was starting to look like a beautiful day.


Earlier posts on this subject can be located at the following links..


brain teaser Jpig


reverend profile red

The Reverend Hellfire is a practised Performance Poet and whilst generally a gentle man, he is currently grinding his teeth and fantasizing about taking a chainsaw to the tree-killing bastards  infesting his neighbourhood at the moment of writing. 




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