A Medical Military Metaphor

•October 21, 2018 • Leave a Comment

A Medical Military Metaphor

“Rushes” – a session reviewing the unedited first prints made of a film after a days shooting”


Some might complain about the production values, but this is Cinema Verite at it’s most visceral and raw footage doesn’t get much rawer than this. Even the daily rushes from Evil Dead VIII (The Enviscerator) don’t get close to the intimate horror and the special sense of lingering unease, that arises from viewing the first rushes of your very own Interior World.


Yes, call it morbid curiosity, but I was keen to get a quick preview of my ultra-sounded guts as I sat there in the Pathology waiting room, and as soon as they were handed

over to me I eagerly cracked open the envelope containing the dim, gray, grainy negatives of my liver, spleen, kidneys,

and other associated organs.

Not knowing how to precisely interpret the ambiguous lumps and morphs of my internal anatomy however, and with no attached report, my imagination was left free to fester; Imaginary lesions bubbled and popped onto the blank screen of my projected fears. Mutant organs multiplied and protoplasmic polymorphs loomed out of the blackness briefly then faded back into obscurity and..

What the hell is that thing?!

The unexplained columns of numbers on the side of each scan didn’t improve my sense of unease either. 47% ??

47% of what? Is that good?

Casually I pump the Technician for hints and clues as to the structural integrity of my organs, but she remains as professionally non-committal as a Pentagon Media Spokes-Thing, poker-face blank behind their mirror shades as they point to a bombing chart;

“I can neither confirm nor deny the presence of Viet-Cong encampments in your Liver.”

“That sounds ominous,” I said innocently, hoping this leading comment would weasel a statement with a bit more substance to it out of her,

but she counters my gambit, sticking rigidly to the script..

“No, not really. We are merely conducting routine monitoring during scheduled surveillance flights..

monitoring the situation on the ground as it develops..

standard procedures..by the book..we are confident Victory is achievable in a very real and military sense. failing that we can almost certainly achieve a Political Solution by holding negotiations with Moderate Elements amongst the Terrorists.”

“How would you actually define a “Moderate Terrorist“, Doctor? Can you put it in layman’s terms?” I queried.

“Oh well I’m not a Doctor, just a Technician, but I’d imagine any Terrorist we could actually persuade to negotiate instead of just killing us could be defined as a Moderate. Actually you have one located in your right kidney now. See?”

“My right kidney, I see,” I said thoughtfully,” and am I to suppose that by a ‘Political Solution‘ you’re talking about chemotherapy?”

“I wouldn’t rule out the use of Agent Orange or other select defoliants in areas where penetration by ground troops remains problematical.” the Technician replied casually,

“Or we could send in a specially trained unit to surgically excise the terrorist cell.

But at this stage it seems benign so we’re just going to keep an eye on it. Hey! It may even turn out to be an Asset, if you know what I mean!” The Technician nodded and tapped the side of their nose knowingly.

“I mean, take the Tapeworm“, she continued, “it may seem counter-intuitive to introduce live tapeworms into somebody’s digestive tract, but in certain types of medical condition, such as Crohns Disease or Irritable Bowel Syndrome, having a seven foot Tapeworm threshing around in your guts can actually be somewhat beneficial. The same may prove to be true with the Taliban. We may yet discover that the only way to keep the Russians (a far greater strategic threat) out of Afghanistan is for us to leave the Taliban infesting the sewers and tunnel systems where they lurk, rather than trying to eradicate them completely.”

obeying doctors orders

“And Radiation Therapy?” I asked cautiously.

“It’s always an option”, the Technologist answered smugly,

“the ICBMs are still there if we need them. But that’s a last ditch option. We always prefer a Political Solution to these chronic conditions”.

“And would that be a Final Solution?” I asked as I scrolled up the ultra-sound prints and shoved them in my pocket.

“What do think we are”, snarled the Tech belligerently,

Racists? Get out the Hell out of here before I call Security!”

So I left the House of Healing but she was still yelling abuse as I walked down the street:

“If you don’t like Western Values why don’t you go hole up in the Ecuadorian Embassy with Julian Assange, Commo!”

“Yeah? ” I yelled back, “Well,

it’s better than being offered sanctuary by your good buddies in the Saudi Embassy!

But by then they’d shut the door.




The Reverend Hellfire is a practised Performance Poet and a noted Social Irritant. Unreliable and with no respect for Authority, he is also inexplicably fond of camels,

 crows and the semi-nude snail.




•October 14, 2018 • 2 Comments



Imagine it like a fairy tale; Once upon a time

you stray into a dark Pocket of Poverty,

deep in the ancient depths of the Financial Forest.

A dense thicket of Payday Lenders & Pawnbrokers

surrounds you, their thick black thorns tearing at your clothes and flesh, bleeding from a thousand small scratches as you try to escape and wend your way back into open country.


But all the paths seem to twist and turn and double back, so that you always find yourself back in the same spot where you started from. As you wander the shifting paths, hours become days and eventually you lose track of Time altogether and maybe you’ve always been here.

Sometimes you hear screams at night,

or see some wild-eyed wretch in the distance,

crashing desperately through the under-growth

as though pursued by all the Hounds of Hell,

driven into delirium

by the Demons of Doubt & Debt.

But you never speak to them,

and mostly

you are alone.

The Parable of the Financial Forest is a Tale that should surely be required bed-side reading for all bright, young, middle-class Millennials at night, as they’re tucked into bed

by their doting, 21st Century Parental Units. Sure, it doesn’t make for a restful night’s sleep, but it’s better they learn young and suffer the occasional anxiety attack later in Life, than learn too late the bitter Lessons of the Financial Forest.

For surely there do lurk Quick-Money loan sharks and dodgy financial consultants, popping up from the undergrowth like fairy-tale Goblins, to waylay the incautious Passer-by

with shiny, red apples and dubious financial advice..

Would I like to Consolidate all my Debts? asks a Dwarf

in a pin-stripe suit.


My Laughter echoes amongst the hollow trees.

(Author’s note; If you ask me, the last thing you want to do,

is see all your Debts start to “Consolidate” on you.

Best to keep it all free-flowing and fluid and amorphous,

lest the different elements start to Coalesce and Combine,

coming together to take on a ghastly Life of their own,

like a Golem, some ghastly half-formed creature of clay,

a hollow thing with a Document for a Heart

that will rise like a Nightmare above the city’s financial skyline, howling for your blood & ruin in the rain.

You can’t run, you can’t hide.

It will pursue you forever,

like a bad HECS Debt for a Degree you never finished,

and all your dreams will be dead.)

On the bright side there is always Bankruptcy.

Not quite a Get-Out-Of-Jail-Free Card,

but waving the threat of it in your Creditor’s face

can often get them to take a step back and pause while they consider their Options, giving you a much needed breathing space. They will proceed more cautiously here. You jump off that particular cliff and it’s Game Over. They get NADA.

“Is Hope then really so Dead?” they must ask themselves,

“Is there really no way we can milk more Cash

from this particular Cow?”

Earning their Percentage rests on their ability

to extract Wealth from unpromising material,

but really, are they just working a dry hole here?

In the end, most of them will crack, which is to say,

they will demonstrate their fiscal probity

by pursuing the safe, economically conservative option

and sell your Debt onto some other Corporate bottom-feeder.

It’s a bit like having Beelzebub on-sell your soul to Lucifer true, but if you can hold them off and keep stalling

so that no-one collects the contested soul for seven years,

then the Spell magically evaporates and you are Free.

Not everyone has the stamina for this sort of long-term financial strategy however. But fear not! The Financial Forest operates on much the same Ethos

as the average Casino, which is to say;

They Love a Loser. Come back anytime.

It’s a funny thing, but thinking over the predatory practises of today’s multi-million dollar Debt Industry, actually

makes me nostalgic for the humble Pawn Shops of Yester-Year. Now this may seem counter-intuitive.

Pawnshops generally possess the same sort of reputation (to continue the Folk Tale Forest Allegory) you find attached to cursed back-woods cottages like in Hansel & Gretel

or the one where Red Riding Hood’s Grandma

turned out to be a Wolf wearing granny’s warty skin.

But once upon a time their cheery yellow hoardings dotted

the inner-city and working class areas. In my own suburb there used to be at least three or four of them operating

at any one time. Many of them had been there for years

and were part of the Social Landscape. They tended to look after their regular customers, and while some

were notorious

skin-flints, others would demonstrate at times a sort of kindness or compassion that you might not have expected from a pawnbroker. Also they never charged more than 25% interest on a loan, as opposed to today’s Corporate Loan Sharks (with stockholders like Woolworths) whose interest on loans in real terms can range anywhere between 45% to 200% once you add on all their additional fees and imposts.

But alas! Ye olde neighbourhood Pawn-Shop has been bought out by Cash Converters or others of their ilk,

and today the name-tagged, face-less functionaries

of the Big Debt Corporations, are shifted around regularly

to different locations, precisely to prevent them

from forming relationships with customers, and all their decisions are made for them by the computer on the counter.


Pleasant dreams, children.




The Reverend Hellfire is a kindly man,

responsible for no more than a handful of deaths,

who sleeps soundly at night on silken pillows.

His Poems cause strong men to weep

and his Ballads maketh the lion to lie down with the lamb.

His like shall surely not be seen again!


Words to the Unwise

•October 7, 2018 • Leave a Comment

A Ballad Moderne;

“Words to the Unwise”



Strolling & Scrolling,

the Semi came rolling,

soon the Bells they were tolling,

yes, tolling for you.



Romance-y & Dance-y,

but the Drugs they were chancey,

soon the White Ambulance-y

was coming for you.


“Don’t be

Sexting & Texting”,

said the Cops, whilst detecting,

and in bodybags collecting,

little pieces of you.


Shun ye

Dating & Rating,

Social-Media Mating,

Predators lurk there pre-dating

on little fish like you.




The Reverend Hellfire..

You know the drill.



•September 30, 2018 • Leave a Comment




and Moderate

my Moods

with Mass Production.

Scaling up to meet demand

Free market Medication.




all Angst

and Alienation

Anxiety Anaesthetists

control administration.


Soporific Synonyms of Science

sedate the sleeping ones,

while Satellite Surveillance scans/

Commands the Dosage;

“Set to Stun”.





The Reverend Hellfire.

No explanation needed.


Quantum Economics

•September 23, 2018 • Leave a Comment



The Quantum Mechanics of my Bank Account;

a complex Matrix of ever-circling

Credit and Debt,

like Matter and Anti-Matter

spiralling through Space & Time

eventually cancelling each other out

somewhere on the far side

of the Event Horizon

of a looming Black Hole.

A Financial Fate

from which there is no escape,

except to try and keep the Present going

by borrowing from the Future

to pay off the debts of the Past.


My Case is not unique

to local co-ordinates;

all across the Multi-Verse

the Ledgers don’t stack up

while God like a dodgy accountant

juggles the numbers

as He plays for time.


Now, Economists & Physicists reassure me

that Entropy is only a problem in a Closed System,

but, frankly,

I think Reality is due

for a Credit Crunch

any day soon now.





The Reverend Hellfire is a practised Performance Poet,

outgoing President of the Kurilpa Institute of Creativity,

and an Ordained Minister of the Church of Spiritual Humanists.

“Wishing all my Pagan and Spiritual Humanist

friends & followers a fruitful

and propitious Equinox”



•September 16, 2018 • Leave a Comment



Cut Down..

not Across.

Anyone will tell you that.


The World in fact is filled

with Helping Hands,

all wearing gloves,

so they don’t leave fingerprints.




A Reverend Hellfire production


FUN! For an Innocent Friend

•September 9, 2018 • Leave a Comment

It’s the Rev’s Birthday, so we reprint this classic sermon from the

Vaults, as he spends the day in quiet contemplation and thought. Enjoy!


(Dedicated to an innocent friend)


The Devil of Boredom

drove me Insane,

the way that it tickled my Soul,

till I scratched that Itch

setting loose,

just for Fun,

Forces I could not Control.

All it took, as it does,

was a phone call or two,

and on Facebook

some Rumours and Clues.

The next thing you know

there’s a great howling Pack,

(I think they were looking for you.)

Well, one can’t reason with Mobs,

or so I have found,

so I just went along for the ride,

as they turned the whole town

oh quite Upside-down,

(I hope you found somewhere to hide.)

Oh my dear Friend, you should pray,

that the Devil of Boredom

never comes into your Life!

For that Devil’s Idea

of Fun I have found

just leads to Trouble

and Strife.

Still, you must drop around

(when the Dust has died down),


we’ll have Muffins and Tea.

But this must be deferred

for alas, I’ve just heard

that the Mob

is now looking

for me.




The Reverend Hellfire..

still burning that candle.