The GardenDespatches from The Satyrs’ Forest

Posts tagged as “Lords of Misrule 2022”

Lords of Misrule 2022: Waves, by Ræl H. Bishop

Our final submission of the season comes from one Ræl H. Bishop, a dear friend of mine. Thank you so much for all the entries this year — it’s a lovely thing to have a tradition continue, especially when i’d worried you’d all forgotten i existed. And as always, please leave all your comments on the main site.

This past summer, I lived in a big coastal city. After two months, things took a turn for the worse and I had to move out. I found the city plastic and frustrating anyways. During my time there, I would go to the beach quite often. But not to swim or make sand castles. In the mornings, I’d walk with a book and a bottle of water and watch the sun dance over the horizon. In the evening, I’d find a vacant spot and watch the cargo ships sail over an increasingly indigo skyscape. It was very cathartic. I feel it’s the same feeling all cathedrals, mosques, and mandirs try to cultivate: a sense of awe and serenity that lets our minds meld and our troubles wash away.

I have a very beach-y metaphor for your consideration. The emotions we experience in our lives are like waves lapping onto a shoreline. All emotions are found in these waves. We get caught up in waves of anger, of depression, of pride and lust, of sorrow and shame, greed and jealousy, euphoria and ecstasy. They are strong, powerful waves. We all stand on these shores, but most folks spend their lives getting tossed and turned by these waves, smashed into the undercurrent and washed up to repeat the process the next day. What we need to do in the face of these waves is not to get knocked over by them, but to hold steadfast and let the waves pass. We observe the waves as they emerge, not “pushing back” and not “falling in”, but noting as they come and noting as they pass. The waves leave, and more take their place, but they’re all transient nonetheless.

I’ve tried taking this notion to heart since I realized it. I hope you can find use of this. The next time you’re caught in a slump, or a fit of rage, or in some all-consuming obsession, just remember that it’s another wave approaching from the distance. You have the power, the strength, the will to keep standing in its wake.

You are not these waves, these fleeting emotions. You are yourself. γνῶθι σεαυτόν. तत्त्वमसि.

Lords of Misrule 2022: Three poems

Today’s post(s) come to us, in no particular order, from three different people, because like buses, good things come in threes. As always, please leave your comments on the main site.

child meets Cernunnos

i met Him in the woods and He told me to hold my chin up His

skin black as ash shining


blood in the snow, He gave me a bow fitted for me and said to shoot

i said what for, to shoot what, i don’t want to hurt a creature

and He said the cycle of life requires death, if you reap then you will sow, to kill a cræture is

to give it back.

i said alright but i was scared and He said what if the other hunters come not my Hunters the other ones

man-shaped and hunting crætures like you

and i shot

the arrow fell through the shadow, spilling, and i said to protect i would do anything

and He said now you understand what this is for. and He said daughter, your destructive anger

can construct mountains and miracles. don’t listen to those as say death and life and rot and growth are anything different from each other. look at the berries grow through the snow. it kills the snow, the snow feeds them, they are not beautiful in this way without the snow.

i said, i understand i am an arrow and a Hunter and i am not yours i am my own and i protect

and like this is how my i became an I

two months later i called for Him

with my head in a bush

because the other ones had taken away my I again

and he said take it back and this time He gave me a knife

and I stole nothing

but I held the knife and sat with Him and remembered that i am I.

Listen to Hanif Aburraqib who says

“I don’t know if I believe in rage as something always acting in opposition to tenderness. I believe, more often, in the two as braided together. Two elements of trying to survive in a world once you have an understanding of that world’s capacity for violence.”

and go lightly but know yourself Leave a comment

sinxelo, lost
Sent in by an anonymous reader from Santiago

know true, feel feind

creer, pensar


estou na miña lengua perdide
non coa morriña, ni pobo.

lellos turn, so they wanted

beg, simple:
¿ Leave a comment


I’m a poet of the future
poet by mission
With pen in hand
I let any dick hard

Strong Viagra is my verse
Fills souls with lust
blowjob by passion
To all subverse morals

I open the gates of hell
Like a lady’s legs
For I am invited to both

May this verse last forever:
I feel sorry for those who love
destined for sadness.

Lords of Misrule 2022: The Gift of the Influencers, by Baki

Iō Saturnalia! Just as last year, a month ago, i flipped the tables and invited you all to send me whatever you wanted and i would put it up on the site. I’m pleased to say that even more took up my offer than last year, and over the next five days, you’ll be seeing a variety of their works. Our first submission for 2022 comes from a reader by the nom de plume of Baki. Enjoy.

One thousand eight hundred and seventy dollars. That was all. She had put it aside, one dollar and then another and then another, in her careful posting of selfies and other online activity. Della counted it three times. One thousand eight hundred and seventy dollars. And the next day would be Christmas.

There was nothing to do but post an Instagram Story and cry. So Della did it.

While the lady of the home is slowly growing quieter, we can look at the home. A VW van. There is little more to say about it.

The engine had decided to finally stop working completely and needed replacement. In the back there was an area too small to hold a toilet. There was a bed, but it was not long enough. Also there was a barely functional kitchen with the names of the owners above the tiny window surrounded by little hearts, Della and James Young.

When the names were placed there, Mr. James Dillingham Young was being paid $300 a week via PayPal, Venmo, and Patreon from people supporting their #vanlife social media lifestyle. Now, when he was being paid only $200 a week, the name seemed too long and important. It should have been “Jamie Young.” But when Mr. James Dillingham Young entered the van, his name became very short indeed. Mrs. James Dillingham Young put her arms warmly around him and called him “Jim.” You have already met her. She is Della.

Della finished her Instagram Story and wiped the tears from her face. She sat by the window and looked out with no interest. Tomorrow would be Christmas Day, and she had only one thousand eight hundred and seventy dollars with which to buy Jim a gift. She had put aside as much as she could for months, with this result. Two hundred dollars a week is not much. Everything had cost more than she expected. It always happened like that.

Only $1,870 to buy a gift for Jim. She had had many happy hours planning something nice for him. Something nearly good enough. Something almost worth the honor of belonging to Jim.

There was the interior of the van. Perhaps you have seen the kind of interior of a van that is created by two people living #vanlife on social media. There was wood. There were lots of fairy lights. There was a colorful blanket to tie it all together. It was very narrow and hard to photograph properly with an iPhone that was two generations out-of-date. However, if she were very patient and used a cheap five dollar fish eye lens attachment, she might be able to get a good pic of the interior. Della, being quite patient, had mastered this art.

Suddenly she stopped trying to film the interior of the van and stared at her phone. Her eyes were shining brightly, but her face had lost its color. Quickly she turned off her phone and set it down on the colorful blanket.

The James Dillingham Youngs were very proud of two things which they owned. One thing was Jim’s VW van. It had been their reason for quitting their boring forty hour a week jobs so they could live their #bestlife. The other was Della’s iPhone, the only camera they owned which allowed them to document their #vanlife on social media so they could be influencers.

If a queen had lived in the campsite next to them, Della would have taken pics of her with the two generation old iPhone and posted them so the queen could see. Della knew that her pics were more beautiful than any a queen could have taken with much more modern equipment.

If a king had lived in the campsite next to them, with his fancy $200,000 RV with pop outs and self-leveling, Jim would have invited him over for a ramen dinner. Jim knew that no king had anything as wonderful as his VW van.

So Della stared down at her iPhone then picked it up again. She stopped for a moment and stood still while a tear or two ran down her face.

With the bright light still in her eyes, she created an eBay auction for her phone then announced it on social media.

“Will you buy my phone? Only two hours to bid!” Della Instagramed.

“Wonderful iPhone for sale. Only two hours to bid!” Della Facebooked.

“Get it while you can! #carpediem #2hourauction” Della Tweeted.

Two hours later, PayPal announced a four hundred dollar increase in their account.

Oh, and the next thirty minutes seemed to fly. She was going from online store to online store, to find a gift for Jim.

She found it at last. It surely had been made for Jim and no one else. There was no other like it in any of the online stores, and it was from a shop very close to them.

It was an original replacement engine for the VW van.

As soon as she saw it, she knew that Jim must have it. She paid the two thousand two hundred and seventy dollars for it. The owner of the shop was a fan, a subscriber to their YouTube channel, and promised it would be delivered within the hour.

What luck! To find the engine so close to their location and so close to Christmas!

Humming Christmas carols under her breath, Della quickly posted that “big things were afoot” and that she “might be off social media for a while” to her social media accounts then packed up her iPhone to be shipped to the winner of the eBay auction.

When Della had done this, her mind quieted a little. She began to think more reasonably. She started to try and cover the sad marks of what she had done. Love and large-hearted giving, when added together, can leave deep marks. It is never easy to cover these marks, dear friends – never easy.

Within forty minutes her head looked a little better and the engine had been delivered. “If Jim doesn’t kill me,” she said to herself, “after he realizes we can’t post to social media any longer. But what could I do – oh! What could I do with one thousand eight hundred and seventy dollars!”

At seven, Jim’s dinner was ready for him.

Jim was never late when he was out scouting new locations worthy of being photographed. Della held the colorful blanket that the engine lay on and sat cross-legged on the bed. Then she heard his step outside and her face lost color for a moment. She often said little prayers quietly, about simple everyday things. And now she said: “Please God, make him think the engine is nice.”

The van door opened and Jim crawled in. He looked very fit and he was not smiling. Poor fellow, he was only twenty-eight – and with only a couple hundred followers on Twitter!

Jim stopped inside the door. He was quiet as a hunting dog when it is near a bird. His eyes looked strangely at Della, and there was an expression in them that she could not understand. It filled her with fear. It was not anger, nor surprise, nor anything she had been ready for. He simply looked at her with that strange expression on his face.

“You’ve bought me an engine?” asked Jim slowly. He seemed to labor to understand what had happened. He seemed not to feel sure he knew.

Jim put his arms around Della. For ten seconds let us look in another direction. Two hundred dollars a week or a million dollars a month – how different are they? Someone may give you an answer, but it will be wrong. The magi brought valuable gifts, but that was not among them. My meaning will be explained soon.

From inside the coat, Jim took something tied in paper. He threw it upon the blanket. “I sold the van to get the money to buy you the new iPhone.”

For there lay The Latest iPhone – the iPhone that Della had been reading reviews about for months. A beautiful iPhone with improved lenses and increased memory, perfect for taking selfies and pics of their van. She had known it cost too much for her to buy. She had looked at it without the least hope of owning it. And now it was hers, but the van was sold.

And then she cried, “Oh, oh!”

The magi as you know, were wise men – wonderfully wise men – who brought gifts to the newborn Christ-child. They were the first to give Christmas gifts. Being wise, their gifts were doubtless wise ones. And here I have told you the story of two influencers who were not wise. Each sold the most precious thing they owned in order to buy a gift for the other.

But let me speak one last word to the wise these days. Of all who give gifts, these two were the most wise. For when Della popped back onto social media that night using her new iPhone to tell their followers this story, Della and Jim went viral. Money and offers of sponsorship poured in. The lady who bought Jim’s van gave it back to him for nothing. The shop who sold Della the engine installed it for free. Of all who give and receive gifts, such as they are most wise. Everywhere they are the wise ones. They are the influencers.

#blessed #bestlife #vanlife

Lords of Misrule 2022 — let the misrule begin!

This is a copy of the main page for this event.

The cycle of a year is a wonderful thing. Trees grow and wilt, rivers ebb and flow, and every winter, Gæa blankets Herself in a snowy coat. All across Europe, people gather together, huddling around, exchanging gifts. Most would call it Christmas.

For us? Well… Io Saturnalia!

It’s time for the second annual Satyrs’ Forest Lords of Misrule! In the spirit of the topsy-turvy season, i’m putting you in charge of the site.

If you write or put together something — absolutely anything — and email it to, come Saturnalia (that’s December 17 to 23, for those who aren’t up to date with their ancient festivals) i’ll put it up on the site, both on the blog and on its own dedicated, permanent subpage, etched in stone for all to see.

Like last year, i would ask that you refrain from political polemics or anything that would get this noble forest in legal trouble. Apart from that, anything goes. Your gran’s chocolate cake recipe? An impassioned defence of Freddy Got Fingered as an ironic masterpiece? Hell, i’ll even let you vandalise one of the permanent pages for a bit if you ask me to. Whatever you — my lords of misrule — want.

You can submit your entries from today until the 16th of December, 2021. Have fun, and don’t be afraid to get weird with it!

— Xanthe