(07/31/1943) The Gnome

The Gnome
There is a Gnome
In the iron mountains of the western desert
Where the jagged spires of the granite rimrock
Come ripping up through the corroded foothills

And he lives in these iron mountains
This Gnome
And he plays on the flame seared plains below
With his trails of dust and his twisting thermals
That begin nowhere and end in swirling nothingness

And he swims over the heat choked ravines
Flowing ever and around the blistering hearth stones
The chipped and glowing walls of the open hearth stones
This Gnome–whose furnace breath
Is the rippling heat of the bake oven
Pulsing and shimmering on the desert floor
And in whose cupped and twisted hands
The molten hyalesence
Of the mirage is prisoned

And he feeds on the fires in his crucible
This Gnome
Feeding and swimming in the fluid seas of the Flame Winds
In the viscous, liquid heat of the burning Flame Winds
Which lick the baked and scorching clay with tongues
Of fire that seem as serpent shappen flames
To bathe the nether islands of the sun
At their dire perihelion

And this amorphous Gnome
Like some smoke-pillared djinn a god evoked
To stand the watch of Cerberus
Above the river Phlegethon–has found
Beneath the slabs of basalt that are split
And rivened by the long diurnal siege
A noduled grain mercuric that had seeped
And sweated from the smelt of cinnabar

This Gnome–this entity–this eidolon
Self-procreate of fire and flame and heat
This Gnome

— Grady L. McMurtry

originally published in Thelema Lodge Calendar, January 1989