Brad Baumgartner


Wallowing unhallowed at the apex of a halo, I fell in love with the Divine. And into Christ’s hollow bosom, the guillotine of nil, I now place my head—There is no one here, neither He nor I, and certainly not you—only a throne of impervious shadows, of not wanting… anything… from anyone… at any time—The zenith is warped, limitless, without entrance and of no depart—The heretical labors of my heart are paid for by the Master, the One who has my heart—the One whom I adore—the One whom I cannot know—the One I seek perpetually—Whose perpetuity is the only sanctimony of my heresy.

All-consumed, I fall out of a tower to quench the thirst—to kiss the lips—to partake in nothing, losing it all for everything—a cat with two heads claws its way into a room—a room that once held the furnishings of a life—a life devoted to being something—There is someone here who houses the quaked loathing of an identity—There is someone here who cannot know.

Invoked: the destruction of the tower of Who-I-Am—There appears a Question—“What time has cometh?”—to which a thing replies:—“A person stands in that body, beholds the alienated animation of the limbs, knows maladies of flora and fauna, hears whispers in the darkened corners, but now no one must stand in that body, must behold nothing of the world, see only visions, whisper only of the One.”

Tiny deer surround my heart—beautiful birds caress the soul of an unknown entity—“Go forth! Go forth! Into the Blackness, the Blankness, the Bliss.”—I cannot turn around—to tell them I fear them, to tell them I believe every word—Only at the edge of the world do the animals speak—only at the edge of the world do they announce their power—for they know only the ways of simplicity; have been pierced, but do not heal—for they have no reason to know they are wounded.

Invisibly gored, a stigmatic opening into otherworldly madness—a beating voidic heart, raw with a love that undoes You—corroded, gnomic, struggling to dispossess—a life—in which I do not oppose myself—in which I am not ever—Dethroned, ecstatic, a withering body capable of achieving Nothing—a fever makes it suffer—forever—Putrefaction.

A once erroneous lover at the brink of dispelling recursion—now waving a wafting life away—in order to stand at the Pulpit of Reversal—to wash the feet of lepers—to join with the sick in their splendorous thrashings about—one with frailty, the one true strength beyond strength, that which gestures the heart’s mutation.

Parched of thirst—creature of the flat and barren plain—drifting in the desert of the wanderer—a hidden Sun, obscured by sandstorm.

Blindly dashing in this night—gnashing teeth in years of no light—tearing paper at corners of walls—a corpse rearing the Bride in the sovereign mountain’s caves—Knighted at the Crown of Undying—in full regalia—to be with that which is not—eluding the invitation of oneself—peering at the juncture of erasure and equivalence.

“Oh, come! Oh, come! to the perilous edge of ontic infamy”—scoured and scourged and bruised and bled, rasping in the dim corners of prayer—where one does not fear any longer—and urges the Ghost to unmake them—always, forever: an anagogic explosion—rupturing its is-ness—devouring all time—pertaining only to nothing—the anarchic redaction of oneself!

Asemic scrawlings—ridded of the concept of Him—for it must be rid of entirely—A phantom hand—writing cantos in the apoplectic vortex—absently penning drawling scriptures of antithesis—Dropped into the groundless cavity of levity, this quill with a thousand needles screeches, “Let me go, let me go, be rid of me,” —Into the air with just a finger, sigils—to be understood so as not to understand—anything, any thing.

There are no dishes in the cupboard—there is no meal at the table—there is no water in the pipes—there is no voice from the larynx—there is no change in temperature—there is only a breathing—there is only a whispered catatonic Remembrance—there is that looking out of the corner of an eye to see oneself as oneself over there—back there, beyond, behind the body of infinity.

This ossuary—the portal to Liberty.

I am a hole.—I am nothing but a hole through which All flows.—I am a pit.—I am nothing but a pit in which All flows.—I am a broken empty glass.—I am nothing but a broken empty glass in which All is uncontained.—I am in darkness.—I am nothing in this unfathomable darkness.—I am blackness.—I am nothing but blackness.—As the blackness, I am blankness.—I am nothing but blankness.

Bilocated to the Lake of Gennesaret —Overheard, a whore who cries for nothing—she is given everything—“Oh, come! Oh, come! To the stage of inversion!”—A tragedy for the pitiless, in which all is given over to the All—The limit exists not—A monstrous vapidity crawls out from under this form—A mirror shows only the crooked realm of angels, of the unhuman, of an is-ness de-created, a copula desiccated.

Nekroflesh of earnest horrors—blithe of brain and sewage vessels—corrosion of the imbecile, the infidel—the solace-bearing nave, where none are called to enter and all shall leave—enthroned upon the barren sphere atop the Mount, sifting, irregular, rapturous.

Shrills, reveries, wailings—bows bent before the center of a wall—to be other than one’s onanism—recanting a cranial lust—accessing the pineal hammer—wallowing unhallowed at the apex of a halo—weeping—vanishing, perpetually, for Thee.

Acolyte-without-eyes in view of a crucifix—whirling in a gulf of tears—treading, legless—in the non-sense of unfeeling, tingling ducts—two holes seeping trances of non-action—trickling othernesses that are never—“Oh, to look not out of eyes that never saw, hear not heartbeats from ears that never heard, lick not honey from a tongue that never tasted, smell not flowers of a garden never planted, touch not the pastels from which You were once painted.”

“Who was that?” the thing whispers—“That tried to be something, that thought themselves anything, in the midst of the mist of storms of illusion, at the juncture of the otherness of being a thing, of the what-so-ever, of the what-ever.”—Anything at all is the illusion.

Two eyes in an aspersorium atop the inverted table—Organs of voidic vision dropping into Eternity.

…Love, love!—
a drunkard of the All!—
to be nothing but a no one whose blood streams through the impossible aorta of the DEACTUALIZED HEART OF THE CHRIST.

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BRAD BAUMGARTNER is a writer and PhD candidate currently based in Western Pennsylvania. Ongoing creative projects include a cross-genre work on nigredo and a collection of aphorisms on mystical inversion.