Sit before the Tale Weaver.

Through this open sash wafts the spice of golden autumn, yet lulled into complacency dare be not.  A harbinger, this essence, of sinister entities soon to stalk the sanctity of your threshold.  Hastened your pulse, and so should it be.  For in due time the graveyards beyond shall be born once more.  My skeletal hand now take, and open your dormant senses to such truths as only the Tale Weaver can reveal.  Yes.  Yessss.  One foot fore the other; step now from my tenebrous haunt.

Behold my playground!  Behold the majesty of rot neath your apprehensive feet, these glorious, rusted arches serving as gateways for the dead.  Across the chilled flesh of your cheek doth flit moonlight embers, or so your consciousness should have you believe.  Tis the fingers of lost souls caressing your countenance, mourning the shell of humanity you now possess.  This wayward wind aches under the weight of their listless repose; cease the shuddering of your limbs and heed their moans!  As you are now so once were they; for what they are now so soon shall you be.  Death, perhaps for you, is final, yet for these entities only in death do they flourish.

Cautious, ever cautious should you step tween the ever-sentient monuments and moss crusted sepulchers; their domain you tread.  Respect these hallowed grounds, respect this kingdom of decay, for to the purveyors of putrefaction tis their crown jewel.  The swirling mist; it jerks at your wrist, starving and desperate for your attention.  Yes, ignorant one, tis the dead!  They watch us…watch you…their doleful eyes shimmering tween the slender silvered cobwebs of the tombsTheir tendrils seek you, enamored with the stink of humanity, and in slow solitaire turns do they wish to dance at your side, their darkened cathedral of sorrow echoing with the strained chords of the damned.

The pathways, the hills, teeming with specters of eras long gone; this necropolis of the horrific busying itself for its grandest day — All Hallows Eve — so bear witness the blessings of death these hapless beings do perceive.  In turn, treasure your own worthless existence and end your common grievances, lest you return, doomed and fated to roam deeper chasms of despair than you can possibly comprehend.

Your attention…drawn to the small clearing just yonder.  Investigate you may; the ghouls I shall restrain whilst you stride tween the jagged teeth of plot and stone.  Yet you turn to me, confusion etched deep into your brow.  Aye, tis what you believe it to be…here the obscure sorrow more profound than anywhere else…here the cloying agony more suffocating than anywhere else…here the tiny monuments adorned with docile lambs, yet greater in stature than anywhere else…the final resting place for the young souls given no choice tween exemption and sin.

Dare not judge me, for your God I am not and do not wish to be.  Even I cannot fathom the laws of what you call fate; aye, nor abide by its rules if I could.  But these younglings I do watch from the distance, ever mindful of their misplaced light in this land so very lost.

You hear her, do you not?  The long, drawn mewls of agony and torturous sobbings of a heart long since raped; tis the guardian of these younglings, there…there…tattered wings draped in black strands over the faceless, nameless tombstone upon which she perches.  Yes…she…the dark angel for these beacons of light.

Gaze upon her grotesque beauty, this devourer of purity, yet your head turn from her tears.  Her anguish respect.  Protects these younglings at all costs and yet mourns her greatest loss, this dark angel does.  I speak of a soul abandoned by its Maker; a soul denied entry by equal parts Heaven and Hell.  A soul delivered from the abyss, cast back to the abyss.  For eternity has the dark angel brooded upon her cold throne of shattered dreams, compassionately embracing the young that seek comfort at her thorn laced feet whilst inconsolable her own charred essence bleeds dry.  For eternity agonizing over the light left unclaimed as her own.

The dark angel seethes – such is the price of unsatiated grief.  Mouth jagged, a twisted hole of silent fury; swarthy locks entombing stricken face.  Yearning, yearning for the sunbeam she may never hold.  Beautiful, wondrous and macabrely awful…the dark angel bemoans what is beyond even my capacity.

Leave now.  I command – leave now!  Across unholy crypts do run with tail tween legs, and pray your ragged breath not be stolen by the ghouls at your heels.  No longer I offer protection; no longer your welcome honored in our sanctuary of desolation.  For on this Stygian night the abomination I am becomes something wholly else; only on this Stygian night do I ignore my own sentence of perpetual condemnation and become something other than the insidious being you loathe.  Into these debased arms do I lift the dark angel and remove her from her watch.  On this endless night of Stygian nights, protector I become.  Upon my lap I lay her wicked head down, my sweet angel of depravity, and so she will mourn.  And hold her evermore, until all that remains of us is the rot tween our bones.

Until next I summon you, be gone.

So the Tale Weaver speaks.

~ Joseph A. Pinto as the Tale Weaver

© Copyright 2012 Joseph A. Pinto. All Rights Reserved.

As a proud participant in this years Coffin Hop 2012 blog tour, I’m giving away an e-copy of my novel Flowers for Evelene, plus a print copy of Twisted Realities: Of Myth and Monstrosity featuring my story Memorial.

If you’d like to be one of the winners of my give away, please leave a comment on this post, and on November 1st, two random recipients will be chosen.

Don’t forget to visit the rest of the Coffin Hoppers at!



Sit before the Tale Weaver.

Be still; your incessant fidgeting only diminishes your concentration.  Do you not hear it?  There.  There.  Aah, stark terror glazes your eyes…but it should not be so.  Relish instead, such a strange and horrid note, that awful baying from beyond the window sash.  Silence yourself!  I share with you now what knowledge I possess of the beast.

Yes, beast I say, but beast quite not.  An unspeakably magnificent specimen of what should not be yet most certainly is.  Born to walk this earth of two legs, but through the nether, hunts upon four.  A most fascinating creature of wretched beauty, resigned in its existence of perpetual condemnation between its own genesis of dawn and gloam.  Humanity its filthy cage.  Bestiality its cherished home.  Torn and ravaged by the tumult within its sorrowful soul.

You gaze upon me in naked incredulity, yet persistent your hands do wring; aye, even you cannot deny the awful splendor laced within the hoarseness of its throaty howls.  Be attentive!  Open not only ears but your narrow mind…listen beyond the ferocity of the echoes in the valley.  Tis true, this abhorrence of nature will rend of you flesh and bone as a child strips wrappings from a gift if its disposition should see fit.  The hunt it relishes, for only then does it truly live, the timbre of its environment razor-sharp, ally to its preternatural senses.  You cannot outrun this thing, for how do you outrun that which already resides within you?

Swift, powerful, majestic…a wholly somber and evil thing.  But I inquire of you – what is the gist of evil?  The unnatural to your eyes; the obscene to your senses?  Or is evil some broken yet unbowed pet, unwilling to yield to the shackles that seek it bound?  If you should learn one thing from me this moonlit night, then heed this—true evil is the fiend that hides behind man’s mask, not the beast that allows its mask known.

Listen closely to that mourning song, that pitiful melody lamenting of deprived freedom from behind unseen bars, for tis the true conflict deep within its dark, fated core, and so it starves.  Longing for the wild.  Longing for the matte of fresh dew beneath its pads and the sparkle-slivered caress of Mother Moon across its rippled back.  Longing…forever longing…this beast so much more than man.

Leave now then, but be mindful to keep a hastened pace along the timber’s fringe.  Pull tight the collar to your neck, and do not afford yourself a moment to pause.  For if the long howl of a doleful ballad plucks at your heartstrings, and the hapless allure of eye shine keeps measure with your gait, pray to your god that on this night the beast remains satiated.

And the man within it holds fast to its rein.

Until next I summon you, be gone.

So the Tale Weaver speaks.

~ Joseph A. Pinto as the Tale Weaver

© Copyright 2012 Joseph A. Pinto. All Rights Reserved.

You have found us


Sit before the Tale Weaver.

You are now in the presence of the Damned. Within these pages, an eclectic gathering of dark writers and poets. Each a distinct voice. Each a bent mind. Each a tortured soul. Here, the fabric of reality twirls round our malevolent fingers. Here, light comes to die.

Our world is beautifully charred compared to your own. Beneath your polish lies our rust. Beneath your glory exists our taint.

We hide not behind masks. We cringe not from the raw. The Damned speak truths you dare not utter. The Damned expose all you shamefully hide.

Indulge upon our sanguine prose. Bloat with our anguished muse. Exalt in our blatant gluttony. You deserve it all. For the Damned are merely reflections of yourself, and portraits do not lie.

No longer are these your safe surroundings.  Eternally damned you shall now be.

Until we choose to summon you again…be gone.

So the Tale Weaver speaks.

~ Joseph A. Pinto as the Tale Weaver

© Copyright 2012 Joseph A. Pinto. All Rights Reserved.

The Vampire I See


Sit before the Tale Weaver.

Heed me now.  ‘Tis not a chronicle I do recount, nor a fable spun beyond your wildest imagination.  Aye, I impart onto you a warning, and if wise, measure my every word you will.  Beware the beast that drinks not of blood but feasts upon the essence of your very being.

‘Tis the psychic vampire I speak.

Once entry is gained into your mind, there is no stopping these fiends.  For that is where they dwell…and breed.  Spawning their miasmal infection deep, deep into the root of your brain.  Imbedded, only the hourglass marks the moment your soul succumbs to their detestable will.

Scoff you do?  Hold your tongue, lest I cast you from this blog and into the feculent depths from which these creatures emanate.  More powerful than their undead brethren, they stride unhindered beneath sun and moon.  Obscurity they prefer; yet unabashed they roam.  Aberrations of ourselves, yet so closely tethered by common threads.  You know who they are, yet their guise renders them unknown.

You fidget within your chair.  Look not queerly upon me then, for the chill snaking along your spine betrays you.  It is them.  Even now, they reach with inconspicuous, needy fingers.  Groping for you.  How the virulent taunt.

Appetites unsatiated, they hunger your vibrance.  Listen now and understand their ploy…they wish you not dead, but rather live not alive.

Do you not recognize the abhorrent ghouls now?  Then introduce you I shall to these miscreations!  Look and forever shall you know – friends and family and strangers their masquerade!  And the cruelest of truths have I saved for last.  There.  There.  Your eyes do not deceive you.  My mirror doth not lie.   Aye, the most wicked of abominations stares you back.

The torturer within.

Until next I summon you, be gone.

So the Tale Weaver speaks.

~ Joseph A. Pinto as the Tale Weaver

© Copyright 2012 Joseph A. Pinto. All Rights Reserved.


Steady hand.  Fluid wrist.

He commences, conducting an orchestra of pain across flesh.  Razor twinkles.  Nary a wince.

Slash Slash Slash

Rinse.  Repeat.

Torrid water singes skin.  Crimson rivulets streak throat.  Razor kisses flesh again; long unhurried strokes abuse corporeal canvas.  Pauses.  Countenance he measures within warped polished metal anchored into wall.  Glimpses little.  Save distorted haze of ruined reflection.  He smiles.


 Slash Slash Slash

 Rinse.  Repeat.

Water murky within stainless steel sink.  Chunky with gore.  He has no business dipping fingers into scorching bath.  No business doing anything at all.  Beyond unforgiving bars of his cell swells heinous cacophony.  Thunder low and throaty upon hollows of the valley.  But this is not thunder.  This is anguish.  This is hopelessness.  So delectable.

This is hell.

Swirls razor into steaming mess.  Watches idly frothy, bloody rings cling to sides.  Ruined tissue.  Barely audible, a squeak from behind.  “Are you afraid?” he deadpans.  Interest seized by serumy whirlpool churning within sink’s bowel.

Scampering.  Feet seeking purchase.  Harried breaths.

“You shouldn’t be afraid.”  Razor to flesh.  Skin yields in neat flaps.  Fine meat under honed slicing blade.  “Not yet, anyway.  Didn’t I tell you this would happen?  I did tell you, didn’t I?”

Outside the bars, wails.  Chaos.  Lunacy.  Choked voices plead mercy.  Invoke God.

 “Yes, I’m pretty sure I told you.”  Air trembles.  Ripples with disorder.  Sniffs air, he does.  As canine, no.  No.  Inhales as predator.  Bite of sulfur.  Copper.  Sickly sweet in throat.  Delicious these nuances of suffering.  “Yes, thinking about it now, I’m absolutely positive that I told you.”

Pops from beyond.  Another, deafening, just down the hall.  Again, a whimper from behind.  “It’s rare when one holds steadfast about something.  Very rare.  Take personal belief, for example.”  Razor to jaw.  So steady, hand.  So fluid, wrist.

 Plop.  Plop.  Plop.  Chunks plummet to sink.

 Slash Slash Slash

 “I believed this day would come for a long, long time.  I’d have bet my life on it.”  Long strokes.  Graceful.  Measured mutilation.  Rinse goes the razor.  Plunk goes the flesh.  “No, no.  I stand corrected.  Can I do that?  Can I correct something already said?  Why, I suppose so, if I’m the one doing the saying.  So no, I would not have bet my life on it.  But I would have bet my soul.”  Chuckles.  “Can I share something with you?  You won’t judge me, will you?”

Gunshots once more.  Outside bars.  Just down the hall.  From here.  From there.  From here and there.  Each extracts a strangled sob.  Behind him.  Closer to the floor.  “I don’t like to be judged.  Really, who does?  Did you enjoy it when you were?  In the literal sense of the word, you were judged.  You received, what, nine years?  Already had a few strikes against you, a few prior convictions.  What did you expect?  I’ll tell you what you expected—you expected not to be judged.  Your life was hard.  No proper upbringing.  You expected them to understand.  You expected someone to give a damn.  But instead, you were damned.”

Outside bars, screams for a child.  A boy.  His name rips from father’s mouth.  Wishes to hear it, perhaps, before he dies.

“Yes, I’ve been judged as well.  A long, long time ago.”  Blade to forehead, above brow.  Steady hand.  Fluid wrist.  Left to right.  Left to right.

Slash Slash Slash

Rinse.  Repeat.

Splashes scalding water into eyes.  Rinses free the gore.

“I didn’t like being judged then.  All because I simply saw things…differently.  All because I held firm, positive in my sentiment.”  Teeth clinch.  Snare vicious drawl.  “Judge not lest ye be judged.”

Outside bars, prayer in wild howls.  Fades.  Cloth tears.  Rending fills the void.  Then an awful sound.  Pigs to trough.  Jackal to meat.  Wet.  Slobbery.

“So, yes, I did tell you this day would come.  Yes.  I’m positive now.”  Din deafens.  Maelstrom of degeneration.  Yet one voice heard above all.  “I’ve enjoyed talking to you, by the way.  Enjoyed your company these past few years.  You’ve been a good egg.”

Body slams into bars.  Mangled.  Glistening.  Chewed.

He stares into distorted mirror.  Hand hovers inches from face.  An artist, he applies the finishing touches.  Long, fluid strokes.  Graceful, sweeping curves.  Not much longer.  Not much longer at all.

 “Listen, you’ve got nothing to worry from me.  Not a thing.  I will not hurt you.  It’s those animals.  Out there.”  Jerks head in direction of bars.  Ploop ploop ploop the crimson splatters shoulder.  Prison garment soaks.  “Those things, they’re you.  What you see is only yourself.  So look, this will go in one of two ways.  Release your inner self, become them and serve.  Or simply become part of them.  I’ll give you a minute to decide.”

 Putrid decay seeps into cowering shadows.  Madness reverberates against walls.  Tang of suffering clots the air.

“Time is up.  Sorry, but I haven’t all day.  Places to go, people to see.  Lots planned.  Bet no one thought the end would ever start here.  I mean, it is a penitentiary, after all.  The monsters are supposed to be on the inside.  But not anymore.”

Razor drops into sink.  “I blame all this on your judge.  He thought he had all the answers.  Problem was that he never asked the questions.  Now it’s too late for that.”

He pirouettes. “He tried to make you into his image.  Aren’t you tired of wearing his mask?  I certainly am.”

And last of face oozes down chest.

“So what’s it going to be, hmm?  A brand new world awaits.”

~ Joseph A. Pinto

© Copyright 2011 Joseph A. Pinto. All Rights Reserved.

Who are they…and what do they want?


1: to condemn to a punishment or fate;
especially : to condemn to hell
2a : to condemn vigorously and often irascibly for some real or
fancied fault or defect
<damned the storm for their delay>
b: to condemn as a failure by public criticism
3: to bring ruin on
4: to swear at : curse—often used to express annoyance, disgust, or surprise
<damn him, he should have been careful>
<I’ll be damned>
5: a group of writers sworn to their sufferings
…they are coming…

© Copyright 2012 Joseph A. Pinto. All Rights Reserved.