In her own person, merely being, poet and sorceress, angel and curse, sister and succubus. Heroine without a patron. Benefactress without a suitor. Her poems, muse-obsessed. Her lovers, in her poems immortalised. No sin without guilt; no guilt without shame; no shame without fear; no fear without dishonour. No truth for the bard but that soaked in blood. Defiance, wilfulness, aberrance, abiding; her magnanimity of heart yet enchanting both love and vision of women and men. And now, despite and still, between the mystery and the myth, between the concealment and the honesty, between the invention and the reality, identity but presumed, she yet commands the affection and homage of those who read her life enchronicled.

Was I by pantheistic destiny – at a specific time in number, star, planet, and position – at a specific place in latitude, longitude, and interval – fashioned a life, alike in every element, unalike in every nuance? Not a hero. Heroes are but champions, bound to cause and to constituency, in whose images they serve. Yet also not an anti-hero. Divergent, aberrant, outlaw, rebel – 独马单抢空做去 – One horse, one spear, daring even the void. With precepts all my own, no guide, no guru, no path, questing, never finding, not here, upon the plain, but in the mirage beyond, on the mountaintop above. Self-cultivated, multi-hyphenated hybrid – poet-warrior-sorcerer-sage. Born in hell, though heaven striving, to escape the hurt, to quell the rage, I became alone. The freedom fettered to a greater freedom is but a fear of freedom. Freedom does not fear isolation. Able to withdraw from others, feeling no need whatsoever for their care, their celebrity, their charm, their companionship, their company, their compassion, their concern, their conversation, their curiosity, I am truly free. In silence and in solitude, finding serenity rather than loneliness, I am free. In being alone, fearlessness eludes the infectious influence of those deluded. Only when alone may one learn to heal oneself, to heal another. In the comfort of my seclusion, I have been released from the confining attachment to others. Reaching, never grasping; embracing, never clinging; everything I touch, opens unto me, to hold, but never to possess. In detachment, I have come to know my true inviolability, my unerring vulnerability, my unassailable insuperability. No family, no friends, no home, no country – my constant companions, compassion, sagacity, tolerance, exile. Passion, joy, and sorrow are feelings; emotion, only fear. A hermit with a lantern, my mysticism; my belief, enlightenment eventual through individual sensual contemplation and cultivation of a power not my own; interest, fascination, infatuation, obsession, all in mystery rather than identity.

I do not believe in the burning of witches. Witches are feared for their sovereignty, Gaea rather than Zion granted, earth left unpoisoned, inviolate, rather than raped in paternity’s mythologically heroic name. Burn, instead, your crosses.