Gold Sunday/Zlatá neděle

Today is the final Sunday of Advent, here is Zaklog the Great performing Gold Sunday:

I will be meeting up with Zaklog later today to discuss the Bohemian Advent series. I’ll be sure to let you all know when that is broadcast. Below is the English poem followed by the Czech.

Gold Sunday

From mighty Babylon of old,
Through furnaces and statues gold,
Endured a voice that prophesied
Great future empires’ fall and rise

And then a rock to dwarf them all,
Arising from a land so small,
Its people cling to trembling hope
In more than just a horoscope.

The age is nigh, the world expects
A noble, mighty architect
Of change unique in history,
An end to Israel’s misery,

And soon That Day will come.


Zlatá neděle

Babylon vladařem poražených,
zlatých soch i pecí rozpálených –
přesto hlas prorocký zaznívá z výše:
Povstanou, padnou veliké říše.

A potom kámen na říše padne
ze země malé, nenápadné,
jejíž lid naděje v duši má stopu
lepší, než najdete v horoskopu.

Nazrála doba, svět vyhlíží cele
slavného, mocného hybatele
dějinné změny, jíž podobné není,
on sejme z Jákoba porobení.

A brzy již vzejde ten den.

When the Light Came Down

A few years ago, I was approached to convert two different stories of Christmas miracles into singable lyrics to be put to music as part of a Christmas album. I composed and sent off the lyrics, but heard no more about efforts to produce the music and record them since then. I’ll share those lyrics with you now, and perhaps one Christmas in the near future their uplifting harmonies will bring joy and hope to an audience.

It is so long ago that I can’t remember the melody I had in mind for this first one, which concerns a secret meeting of Christians in the darkest depths of Soviet Russia. I will share the other one next week, if I can work out a way to format text into two columns in a blog post.

When the Light Came Down

In a land of cruel repression
And an atmosphere of dread,
The threat of disappearance
Hangs over every head.

The Cheka took the clergy
Who failed to hide themselves;
The gulag’s thirst is never quenched
For bloodshed in its cells.

In a barn out in the country
The faithful dare to meet
To celebrate the Nativity,
That great day in history

When the Light came down
To redeem the earth;
The Word made flesh
Through a pauper’s birth.

The pastor sees a boy he knew
And baptized long ago,
Now grown into a strong young man
Trudging through the snow.

The pastor’s smile is tempered
By a dark but nagging thought;
“Where has he been all of these years,
What battles has he fought?

“Is he lost, in need of saving,
Or an agent of the state,
Here to observe, inform on us
And seal our awful fates?”

But the Light came down,
Leaving heavenly bliss,
To be sacrificed
For such a wretch as this.

His mind made up, the pastor calls
For quiet, then he reads
The words of the old liturgy
That address their deepest needs:

For peace on earth, goodwill to men
And glory upon high
To God who is owed all our praise,
And all things beautifies.

When the pleas move on to ask
For blessings on the nation,
A look upon the young man’s face
Betrays his consternation.

For the Light came down
And showed the world its sin;
Men preferred the dark
To being changed within.

All there commend their lives to Christ
With confident conviction
Alone the young man holds his tongue,
Won’t mouth the benediction.

Sins are confessed, repented of,
Forgiveness is proclaimed.
God’s Mercy is extolled and
Calls to holiness are made.

The Eucharist draws nearer,
God’s purity declared;
His Holy Spirit invited into
All those thus prepared.

Then a Light shone down,
Into that dusty place;
An instinctive fear
Flooded every face.

Could that light be the Cheka,
Arriving to arrest
The faithful for their brazenness,
And thought crimes unconfessed?

No, it’s something more profound,
This old barn is now holy ground,
Each heart is filled with joy and peace,
Each guilty conscience finds release.

The young man stumbles forward,
Pleading for his soul,
The great light struck him blind and he
Now longs to be whole.

For the Light came down
To heal our ills;
Not for fortune, fame,
Or a thousand hills.

“I was here at the state’s behest
To report on faith expressed
In anything but the Soviet
And failure to quail at their threats.

“Forgive me, for I have betrayed
All for which you worked and prayed;
I believed their vicious lies
About you and all they despise.”

The old men gather round and pray
For the scales to fall away
From the eyes of his heart and head
To revive what once was dead.

For the Light came down,
Offering new birth,
To flee the snares of sin
And live a life of worth.

Silver Sunday/Stříbrná neděle

Today is the third Sunday of Advent, here is Zaklog the Great performing today’s poem:

And here is the English followed by the Czech version:

 


Silver Sunday

Bags of silver coins change hands
For human lives from distant lands:
Some caught in war, some caught at crime,
Some could not pay their debts in time.

With chains on their bruised feet and hands,
Worth thirty silver to a man;
Some foolishly still dare to dream
That they could one day be redeemed.

But soon That Day will come.


Stříbrná neděle

Za mince stříbrné ve váčku z kůže,
ten, kdo chce, člověka koupit si může.
Válka či zločin, stihly je lapit,
některé neschopnost dluhy včas splatit.

Ruce I kotníky sedřené pouty,
kus můžeš za třicet stříbrných koupit.
Někteří snívají bláznivé snění,
že přijde den vykoupení.

Však brzy již vzejde ten den.

Operation Vampire by Steven G. Johnson

Another Superversive Press release this week, this time a wonderfully gripping military fantasy by Steven G. Johnson, of an alternate world war II in which elves, humans, dwarves and trolls fight together against against the vampires, werewolves, demons and assorted hordes of hell itself.

Mick Murphy’s an Irish half-elf from Manhattan. His best buddy Dave is a dwarf from Brooklyn. Together with a company of misfits, screwballs and, well, trolls from the pit, they’ll take on anything Austro-Hungaro-Romania, or for that matter Hell itself, cares to throw at them.

But behind the vampires, werewolves and sky demons are the Big Boys, deep down in a pit of their own. The War won’t end until G.I.s plant their boots on the Devil’s throne and kick him out. Working their way up to this biggest of D-Days is going to tax the United States Army to its utmost … but the dogfaces on the Line are one step ahead of the brass, because they’re already halfway to Hell.

Hard Moon by David Hallquist

This has been a long time coming, and I am happy to finally announce the launch of Hard Moon by David Hallquist.

It was a pleasure to edit this book (as well as the rest of the trilogy), and I’d like to think I made valuable contributions to making it as awesome as it is.

Injected with an alien monster, left for dead, and now hunted by the most powerful men in the solar system.

Surprised to find himself alive in a freezing medical waste dump on Luna, and with an alien creature trying to devour his body and mind from the inside, Brandt Wills slowly remembers who he was and how he got in this mess. He discovers he is not the only victim of a hellish secret laboratory performing vile experiments on humans. His only way forward is to fight for his life, his sanity, and his soul against the most powerful forces in the solar system.

Enjoy David Hallquist’s thrilling debut novel and book one of the outstanding Singularity Crisis trilogy

Books 2 and 3 are available for preorder, and will go on sale on the 13th of January and of February.

http://bit.ly/GoddessGambit

 

http://bit.ly/GoddessGambit


Lyrics, melody and vocals by Ben Zwycky, musical accompaniment by Sean McCleery

Cover art by Corey McCleery

Selected images and colliding planets animation from pixabay

Stock effects from footagecrate.com

Jupiter image from NASA Juno Mission

Balcony figures by Lee Madison

3d modelling and animation in Daz Studio, audio editing in audacity, and video editing, animation, additional effects and post production in Hit Film Pro by Ben Zwycky.


Lyrics to the song:

There is No War That Can be Harder Fought

There is no prize more worthy to be sought,
There is no war that can be harder fought,
Than for the fate of your own very soul,
For eternal are the stakes and goals.

There is a beast that grows inside of me;
One of great strength and raw hostility.
I do not dare let it take full control,
For each time it takes an awful toll.

Its powers have saved my life so many times,
Down in these dank and deadly lunar mines.
The ones who forced this beast into my veins
Shall reap a vast and wrathful hurricane.

I must survive and tell of what I know,
And put an end to this great horror show;
To think that with this monstrous form they can
Improve upon a mortal man?

This is my goal, for now at least I live,
This is the sacrifice that I must give,
To fight for justice, stop those evil men,
And perchance, to find true life again?

So endure! And persist!
Against all expectations inhumanity resist!
Take control! Reach that goal!
Against all expectations work to purify your soul!
Win this war! Beat the odds!
Bring down those men who see themselves as mighty demigods!

Then at last, I’ll know who I am.

Bronze Sunday/Bronzová neděle

Today is the second Sunday of Advent, here is Bronze Sunday performed by Zaklog the Great

below is the English and Czech version

Bronze Sunday

Bronze shields and spears arranged in ranks
To form the fearsome Greek phalanx
Conquered nations far and wide;
Now there’s a new source of Greek pride:

Bold theories and insightful thoughts
That they debate in marble courts.
“Whose wisdom can outshine our own
Or that of our great pantheon?”

Twixt oracles and temples grand
In Athens a small altar stands
Placed there as a reverent nod
To an as yet unknown god.

But soon That Day will come.


Bronzová neděle

Bronzové štíty a v zákrytu kopí
falangy Řeků když moci se chopí.
Kdo může odolat moci a síle,
přichází Řekové a jejich chvíle.

Nádvoří dlážděné mramorem skvělým
debatám naslouchá, myšlenkám smělým.
“Před naší moudrostí každý se sklání,
vznešený pantheon – bez srovnání!”

V zajetí chrámů, kde lid bohy vzývá,
v Aténách oltář prostý se skrývá
Prostý a vážný uprostřed všeho
k uctění boha neznámého.

Však brzy již vzejde ten den.

Planetary Anthology: Pluto

The Planetary Anthology series has been handed over to Tuscany Bay Books, and all of the existing Superversive Press publications in that series have been taken down, meaning those links in the Cinematic Superverse no longer work. They will be rereleased by Tuscany Bay in a few months’ time once the previously unpublished books in the series have been released.

The first of these, Pluto, has just gone on sale. I played no part in the production of this book or its trailer, but will have an epic poem entitled “Kronos’ Cradle” published in Saturn, when that comes out. If you’d like to take a look at tales of death and great wealth, click on the cover image below: