The Pressure Cooker


Mark Andrew Holmes


I am Rage; I am Vengeance.

I am thwarted, persecuted youth.

There are others, many others, like me.

Let us join together,

And with our rage and our horror,

Sweep away decadent pretentious plastic society,

A tenebrous nation of gray oleaginous robots

Marching forward in lockstep, eyes fixed forward, cold as the eyes of a stuffed deer,

With blank, ineluctable purpose,

Or smiles vapid as a Stepford Wife’s,

Toward a future essentially the same,

As it has been for centuries—

A decaying building, rat- and roach-infested, ripe for the wrecking ball,

And we sit at the controls of the crane;

A rotting corpse, poisoning and devouring the living,

A Frankenstein’s monster without the grace to cremate itself,

Which we can, and will, cheerfully do for it.

We are Goths advancing on dying Rome;

We will burst the bonds of iron thought asunder,

We will put Procrustes on his own bed,

And if we are dead, it is because we have been bound hand to hand, chest to chest,

Face to face, with corpses.

“So use it that my revengeful services may prove as benefits to thee…”


We are the Black Horde.

The earth wobbles unsteadily as we rush forward, a torrent of horrific power,

And inverted pentagrams materialize on the walls of culverts,

And women sprawl lifeless in brooks, shorn of their hair, yawning holes in their souls, long knives protruding from their backs;

And animals dance incandescent in their death throes, reeking of petroleum,

And men lie prone or hanging in the air in putrid darkness, one at last with Captain Howdy,

And unknowing last meals are eaten heartily, a feast of blood, on an unheralded Kristalldäg,

And sudden shock waves reverberate in frosty fields,

And blood-soaked souls flop from high windows as tocsins shriek endlessly, iron-lunged,

And crosses sprout on hillsides, empty of those executed upon them,

And cold death flies from the forest like Harpies

And hot death rains from the skies as upon Pompeii;

As boys stand stripped in the cold rain,

And magenta-tressed girls stand shrieking their fury to the indifferent heavens,

And flags flap tattered from perforated flagpoles, silhouetted against gunmetal skies,

And toddlers embark upon an adventure more wonderful than the mundane, in any of its aspects, can offer,

And ice-covered petals drop from trees in sudden deadly storms,

The world trembles.


The Ancient Ones batter at the gate;

Howling with unearthly hollow stridency like gigantic vacuum cleaners

In a language only the chosen can understand,

Shrieking, shrieking for entrance onto the earthly plane.

The Great Abscess upon the wound of the world is purulent, reeking and bloody—

We have lanced it with our deadly spears;

But the flow is never-ending,

And soon it will become an all-engulfing tide.

Yet it must come.

Niobe weeps, weeps a waterfall of acid

For the sins of the world.

We are the agents of the One True Physician;

He/She/It alone can heal the planet.

Look at what we have for so long swept beneath the rug!

Cosmetic modifications will no longer serve;

We will destroy the world and all that is in it,

Unless you use the brains you never wanted to use

To work with us toward a New World Order,

And you have very little time.

Copyright 2003 by Mark Andrew Holmes.

For endnotes to this poem, click here.

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