Wednesday, December 6, 2017




WHO ARE THESE DEAD FOLKS?                                                           (
          This hangover is SPECTACULAR! Don`t get me wrong,
I feel bad… but I also have that crystal clarity
that makes me think I can see for 100 miles
and call the ravens out of the white pine from way back
An old pal is getting out of the Inuvik Jail, where they`ve had him in the hole for that last 72 days.I guess they`ve had him there for the last eight months.
He`s a quiet fellow, never makes a fuss ho! ho! and
will hit town like a Okkie tornado and freight train all rolled up in one and come whistling down the river hopefully in a bush plane – he`s not high enough for travel by levitation just yet. I imagine we`re going to fix that.
  1.       We have a tragedy on our hands at the moment –
    we`re out of hooch, internal bug spray – let`s call that
    High Mountain Moonshine Overproof Special Yahoo! That`s the name of this blend…but it`s almost gone.
    I woke up this morning because I was buzzed
    by a Beaver.
    I`m not talking about a blonde in tight jeans
    about to sit on my nose – no! I`m talking about
    a Canadian bushplane/floatplane which makes quite
    a roar when it`s coming in –  buzzing your cabin, or coming
    down to land at a ridiculous speed.
    I knew who it was.  It had to be
    Bobby Carl Wildman, who had just been sprung from a jail
    only 400 miles down river.
    He`d be  rarin` to go.
    Problem with Bobby – he gets an idea in his head
    it stays in his head until something is done about it.
    Most of his ideas involve motion for everybody else.
    You could say that`s part of his charm, and sometimes
    you`d be right.
    His last name is Wildman and he acts like a Wildman,
    and every time he comes by: I have a near death experience.
    We usually follow a plan, take off in some direction
    and see what the hell`s going on over there. If nothing`s happening; that changes pretty quick.
    Once I was lying on my back  relaxing in a canoe in at Trout Lake in cottage country. The waves were rocking me like a little baby in his cradle. And the sun is warm on my face.I was listening to the song of birds.
    All of a sudden there was an
    was an explosion on the shoreline, much much louder than a firecracker. It was Robbie arriving.Robbie showed up with a couple of suspicious looking fellas in a white limousine.
    Next morning at 5:00 A.M. I wake up in New York City. With no memory whatsoever of how I got there.
    I look up and admire the plaster moulding between ceiling and wall . It`s good carved work. Then I hear the constant traffic flow… WTF?
    Then I forced myself up onto all fours – and I started
    to crawl. It seemed like a long journey across an
    endless desert.  What drug gives you tunnel vision and
    and totally fucks your depth perception, too… so that a foot
    can seem like a crab at the bottom of a cliff… What drug can make a luxurious rug at the Hotel Pierre look
    like the Gobi desert?
    What FOOL would take such a drug„,Am I that much of a fool… Oh, no! No negative script right now, revolving in my swollen brain….I don`t have time to be depressed.  Yes,
    I might be an utter shit; I might be spit on a windowpane –
    but if we don`t clear this room they`re gonna put me away forever…
    In one of those cheap government asylums,
    where all the patients are numbers walking around with their asses exposed.  Eight AM and they bring out the firehose –
    they start hosing the `residents` down with cold water…
    No need for showers…. and when they put you in immaculate white solitary confinement, that`s when, under the bright lights they let the spiders loose on you..! You can see `em real well against the bright white floor and sheets… then you`ll scream…. yes, then…scream….  you will!
    There are certain parts of YOUR body they like to eat when you`re sleeping.
    STOP IT. That`s all in my head.. No one`s turning the spiders loose on you – not quite yet,  anyway…. Now open your eyes and get a grip….
    Not acid, not cocaine, not crystal meth or MDA, not
    herb… although herb sometimes can do amazing things
    with colour… not Haldol, methadone or amitriptyline, not most of the prescription drugs… although there are
    some exceptions if taken to excess…not PCP„, not PCP….
    oh God!  Not PCP!!  What have we done?
    Why are all these bodies lying in our room.  On PCP
    you can do any monstrous thing… you might think it`s for the good of society that you`re choking the life out of your high school teacher…
    You might feel sorry for homeless people, then kill them all and drag them to your room in the Hotel Pierre
    so they`d be warm and not feel so alone anymore.     Schostokovitch! Is that what we have done?  Are any of the people alive? Am I  a certified monster, after all? 
    Were my friends in primary school right all along about what
    I would become?  On PCP, all of the above is possible
            “THEY`RE GOING TO HUNT US DOWN LIKE DOGS! “I whisper to myself.
             “get a grip…. first of all you`ve gotta go and catch that prick over there….“   I`m crawling again, trying not to puke… He can`t hear me.  I`m too quiet.
    The bastard`s over there in the corner hunched over the telephone talking rapidly.He looked like he was 100 miles away…. I had tunnel vision. WHAT MADNESS IS THIS?
    I have a wad of money in each of my front pockets… Have we robbed these people then terminated their lives?.
    Did we chop them up? I had a horrible taste in my
    mouth just then…it tasted like last night`s  liver and
    onions.Did we eat their LIVERS! Are we harvesting organs?
    I can`t crawl far or fast… from all fours I collapse on my stomach. In the rug I smell something sweet. My nose is in something soft… Dear God,it`s a hand! It`s perfume I smell… With my eye I follow  the hand along the arm up  to the head. The eye in the head opens.  The eye is huge
    and seems to be following me as I attempt to crawl away
    I`m about to make an exit on my knees…
    It sees me: “HEY, COOCHIE!” It shouts at me.
    “Thank God!“  I`m thinking. It`s alive! Do I have to kill
    it again?”
    I clutch the back of Rob`s collar and pull him
    onto the rug with me. So he`s at my level: “YOU FOOL! WHAT HAPPENED? “ I hiss.
    “No one`s sure.  Remember those two honchos in the limo.
    “Just barely.
    “Well, we rode in the car with them for five hours.  You told all kinds of funny stories….
    “OK OK. what happened!
    They gave five pills of that date rape drug.  They told me to try it out.
    You gave it to yourself?
    Sure, why not?
    “You give the pill to your date, not yourself You`re supposed to give that pill to the woman and SHE passes out. Then you jump on her and do your evil deeds…  And then you`re facing ten years in the slammer…
    The way you did it: “WE passed out. You can tell the guys it worked! too well…It turned us into killers, also!
    He looked at me for a long time. I was just about to pull out one of his teeth  with my bare hands if he didn`t speak up.
    He said: “That pill really got on top of you, didn`t it?“
    I say:  “What pill, you fool!  What the fuck happened?  Our room looks like Cambodea after a massacre!  WE HAVE TO DO SOMETHING WITH THE BODIES!”
    Rob looks at me as if he`d never met me before,
    “Those aren`t bodies!   That`s Shula and  those are her friends! They`re all alive, I think, anyway.
    We met last night…. drank several gallons of beer.
    You must remember Shula.  She was giving you oral love under the table!“
    “I`m hallucinating are you?” I ask I`m not mentioning
    the evil grin the HEAD had given me?
    “Yeah, quite a bit actually… How about you? You took three times what I took… oh yeah, and the boys said there
    might be a little PCP mixed in it just to keep you awake… so any weird thoughts you`re having – forget `em.“
    I didn`t say a word. So he continued his explanation:
    “You climbed up onto the stage and did a slow striptease.Shayla got up, too, and stripped with you. The whole place went wild; the bar was mayhem.  The bouncers and the bartenders were freaking. Then you got up on a table and…things settled down when you were least at first….
    “Then you made a speech about “LIBERATION” and  things got way way worse…everybody got up on the tables throwing their glasses against the wall… Cops were called. We got out quick  We have a room here…”
    “OK, I understand.  But there`s something we`ve gotta do first. Come back into the room with me and we`ll check their vital signs.“
    I woke up this morning full of doubt and recriminations.Guilts of all manner were trickling past my ears into my enlarged mind.  I can`t drink a bottle of whiskey straight without water and expect to survive.  I could do it when I was twenty-one but even then it was a bad idea.
    These days it`s damn nearly suicide
    I have that clarity that means you`ve just dumped about a billion brain cells.
    Another time we ended up in Peru.
    That another story, one for a more adult audience. Ho! Ho! Joking, of course.  You can imagine what Bobby got up to in Peru – with Peruvian flake cocaine selling for $10.  a gram.
    I`m admitting nothing, naturally.  We went up into the Andes and we were consumed with snow.
    I remember that sudden vacation a whole lot better.
    I have a very Klear memory of it.
    Another time six of  us were just arriving back at Pearson International Airport (Toronto). I was with a bunch
    of Danes (Gerd, especially). They had just introduced me
    to Aquavit. I had six glasses of it then fell asleep behind the wheel. (Wish I had a glass of it now!)
    I drove into a concrete abutment, attempting to leave the parking garage. We weren`t going fast, but even
    at 10 MPH you can have quite a collision.There were six of us in the car.
    I drove an Oldsmobile Cutlass straight  into a cement  abutment   I WAS AWAKENED BY THE SCREAMS OF MY PASSENGERS.
    Usually within three days of Wildman`s arrival, some disaster happens
    Bobby kicks the door open  and shouts: “I NEED SOME HEROIN!”
    I just stared at him from across the room….   ….  …  You son of a bitch? YOU MAD BASTARD! You know there`s no heroin in Rat River! For the last month
    we haven`t even had salt!“
    “Fuck that! I came to pick you up!  Time for a party… I`m just out of jail and you look out of your mind.
    “What`s wrong with you — you look like you`re dying!”
    “Isolation sickness.  Mad Po left for a booze purchase
    three weeks ago.  At first the silence was wonderful…now, not so much.
    “Forget that! It`s time for a party I`ve got $32,000 and I want to spend it!
    Bobby waves to the pilot.  An engine starts up
    down the river.
  2. ****************
  3. WAIT-A-BIT          Part 4

           “My name is Frank”
           “I`m glad you remembered,“ Hank mutters to himself
            I start writing again … now not saying the words out loud as I
    write them:
                     I  woke up this morning with my head on a small desk
    right next to the wood stove. I heard a scratching noise behind me,
    and that is usually not a good thing in the Artic, when you`re living without  a door.
           I go to bed with my gun at night and I rarely clean my
    clothes – so I am always ready. And I can leap out of bed and start firing like a Bonzai warrior
          You can strap that tarp down pretty tight, tho, and you can hear him if he`s on his way – the Devil Beast. I read:
       “The red eyed devil who hates us and knows out minds – the
    beast with great claws and teeth who digs  better than we can
    because he wants to return to Hell.”
           “The beast who eats our food and who pisses on the rest
    of it, so only he can eat it later.  The beast who hides the urinated food deep in a hole of his own choosing;
    who scatters our possessions. ……..Who then rapes us
    improperly after the despoiling is done.”
            “Would you stop TALKING LIKE THAT!”  Hank shouts:
    “It`s giving me the creeps, this Devil Beast business…. when
    did you write that shit? I hope you`re not writing any more…
    I don`t think I can trust you – if you`re going to keep writing stuff like that!”
          “  You sound like some evil  monk in a
    subterranean cell….reading out loud by candlelight… in a
    monk`s hood..” He looks over at me, he gets
    down almost to his knees to look. He falls to his
    knees, presses his forehead against the cool clay
    of the dugout wall. He  turns and looks at me again:
    “Shit! That`s what you look like, too!”
    he says….
         “What you were reading out loud – It sounded vaguely liturgical”, Hank says
           ” I think we have to assume it was liturgical…” I say  “that it was a prayer of sorts…. seems like  Thomasino was praying to the Devil on Four Legs….I say.
      …..He was certain there was no escape from the Beast, the beast was surely and inexorably coming to  devour him…  …” I`m having trouble with this last bit… He`s scribbling like he didn`t have much time:   Thomasino was praying to the GREAT BEAST ON FOUR LEGS:  “Please eat my brain first!, it says, “Please eat my brain first…PLEASE! Don`t start with my testicles!“
    I say,  “What!  Me? You think  Me?  I didn`t write this stuff… No, no this was a vet from South America – came up here to protect the animals..I”
              “A war vet?`asks Hank.
              “No,  a doctor…from South America, a veterinarian.  Like I said, he came up here to protect the animals.
               “THESE ANIMALS?  He came up to PROTECT…..
    THESE ANIMALS!“ hANKS  shoulders are shaking, he`s laughing.. I gotta get this down… This is crazy… this is
    is too crazy…. Hank is scribbling again, “A veterinarian! Ha! Ha!”
          “Yeah!      I just found his diary. I was reading it to myself..”
            “OUT LOUD!“ He turns to me.   “You were reading OUT LOUD!   It sounded as if you were saying a prayer… it sounded like you were praying to the Devil Beast…?”….  „„ “You weren`t, were you?”
               ” Of course not!”“Do I LOOK as if I`d do something like that?”
                 “In that hat with 4 screens, you look as if you might
    do anything at all!”
                 “When we fix that door,  I won`t have to sleep in these screens. Then I`ll look normal,  you`ll see… and Matilda will, too.” I said.
                  I nod my head and whisper to him the name – “Matilda.”
               Hank`s got his note pad out again, which delights me! I used to do the same thing exactly – whenever I smelt the whiff of a story.
                 He still thinks he`ll get a story out of this.  And when
    the story`s finished, he`ll give it to the newspaper  And,  after that?”
               “After that you`ll hit the road, eh, Jack?”„, C-U-LATER!“ Is that what you`re thinking
                “Yeah, I have to.. I got my story… too bad about
     no job, no boss newspaper building, no school,

  1. no…  ….But I never knew him….”
               “You got a map?” he asked.He`s standing again, almost.
                    “Maps, we had maps galore…. But
    after the blast, there weren`t no  maps no more.”
                      Hank had started to untie the tarp;he`d walked over to the tarp hole
                       “No maps… no more…. no maps by the door.“I said
                     ” Do you think you have brain damage?“ Hank asks
                       “That`s a hell of a question to ask, just as you`re
    trying to leave!  Do you mean me?” I say
                      “ I mean  everybody here in town, but you especially,”Hank say
                       “We coulnd`t find anything…. except twisted up re-bar  for our  foxhole walls… without the rebar… and all those beasts in the lowlands before the River, we would have been fucked!   They can`t dig thru re-bar, you see… So now we`re better off – we`re not totally fucked.  We`re just completely screwed…”    I`m saying.
                    “WHAT?” he shouts.  His eyes are crazed.
                      “Soon as the ringing in our ears cleared, we remembered we were hungry” To tell the truth. we couldn`t remember our own names , let alone the name of our town… and so  WE CAN`T FIND ANYTHING ON A MAP…    EVEN IF WE HAD A MAP, which…….. we…………don`t….we don know what names to match on the map….
                     “WE DON`T HAVE A MAP!“ i shout back at him
                        At least that was clear.
                                 ***  ***  ***
     END OF WAIT-A-BIT  – Part 4
    30 notes
  2.  You reblogged ballantineandzappadat zappadat Source: ROVING REPORTER RANTS



       This is not an enlightened view, or maybe it is... My thinking is that you should get plastered every month or two, at least once.
        It blows out the tubes and clarifies the situation... Ho! Ho!  You know that mad clarity that comes after a 3 day bender?  You can see for miles. But don't make any important decisions... Because you're still loaded.
        There are tests and signs, but who cares.
You know when you're blasted to the gills. No one needs to tell you.  You won't listen anyway.

        There are different kinds of trips. I just took one into the great beyond.

        Whatever doesn't blow out half your brain 
cells, makes you stronger.   

        Notice I didn't say,'makes you smarter'... And with good reason.

         I like to write when I'm hungover because I don't take myself so seriously. It's hard to take yourself seriously when there's a pounding in your head that sounds like someone's knocking on the door.  And at the end of the dark hallway here... there's a red EXIT sign.    I know very well it was not there before.


      I FEEL LIKE A DOG TOOK MY                                           PLACE*

* I've always liked this expression. It used to make me
laugh until I woke up this morning and it was true.

Sunday, December 3, 2017

ELEVATOR GIRL ( with one GRAIL HISTORY mysteriously attached attached)

(1)ELEVATOR GIRL - This is about as close as Johnny Rock and the Mainstreet Band got... to recording a pop record. These guys were jazz players, so they had no problems with the complex rhythms. With my hard-edged rhythm guitar strokes set on treble, the pop song idea went out the window.  

"Too much calypso in it!"  Clayton laughed, "For pop."

2) ELEVATOR GIRL: Especially with that taste of Jamaica in the rhythms. Anyway, I like the song... It's so unpretentious. The song says what it means and means what it says. At any rate, it's not so serious!
(C) 2017 by W.G. Milne All rights reserved.
Hope you like it.

Cover photo-art is by KLGE

writer and singer of the song is W.G. Milne

 To see more song details please see the


   for this and other Johnny Rock and the Angels songs.

    This song is recorded by JOHNNY ROCK AND THE 



see below - a history of the Holy Grail, which somehow landed here.

I'm doing an article called: "NOTIONS OF THE HOLY GRAIL" which I'll post soon.

Below is a Catholic History of the Grail - which I did not write.
The copyright is in the name of the author. I use this as source material only, among other sources. Somehow it got transferred here. So why fight it?

 My article to be is on a quite different theme.

Copyright © 2012 by Kevin Knight. Dedicated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

The name of a legendary sacred vessel, variously identified with the chalice of the Eucharist or the dish of the Pascal lamb, and the theme of a famous medieval cycle of romance. In the romances the conception of the Grail varies considerably; its nature is often but vaguely indicated, and, in the case of Chrestien's Perceval poem, it is left wholly unexplained.
The meaning of the word has also been variously explained. The generally accepted meaning is that is given by the Cistercian chronicler Helinandus (d. about 1230), who, under the date of about 717, mentions of a vision, shown to a hermit concerning the dish used by Our Lord at the Last Supper, and about which the hermit then wrote a Latin book called "Gradale." "Now in French," so Helinandus informs us, "Gradalis or Gradale means a dish (scutella), wide and somewhat deep, in which costly viands are wont to be served to the rich in degrees (gradatim), one morsel after another in different rows. In popular speech it is also called "greal" because it is pleasant (grata) and acceptable to him eating therein" etc. The medieval Latin word "gradale" because in Old French "graal," or "greal," or "greel," whence the English "grail." Others derive the word from "garalis" or from "cratalis" (crater, a mixing bowl). It certainly means a dish, the derivation from "grata" in the latter part of the passage cited above or from "agréer" (to please) in the French romances is secondary. The explanation of "San greal" as "sang real" (kingly blood) was not current until the later Middle Ages. Other etymologies that have been advanced may be passed over as obsolete.
When we come to examine the literary tradition concerning the Grail we notice at the outset that the Grail legend is closely connected with that of Perceval as well as that of King Arthur. Yet all these legends were originally independent of each other. The Perceval story may have a mythical origin, or it may be regarded as the tale of a simpleton (French, nicelot) who, however, in the end achieves great things. In all the versions that we have of it, it is a part of the Arthurian legend, and, in almost all, it is furthermore connected with the Grail. So the reconstruction of the original Grail legend can be accomplished only by an analytical comparison of all extant versions, and is a task that has given rise to some of the most difficult problems in the whole range of literary history.
The great body of the Grail romances came into existence between the years 1180 and 1240. After the thirteenth century nothing new was added to the Grail legend. Most of these romances are in French, but there are versions in German, English, Norwegian, Italian, and Portuguese. These are of very unequal value as sources, some are mere translations or recasts of French romances. Now all of these romances may be conveniently divided into two classes: those which are concerned chiefly with the quest of the Grail, and with the adventures and personality of the hero of this quest; and those that are mainly concerned with the history of the sacred vessel itself. These two classes have been styled respectively the Quest and the Early History versions.
Of the first class is the "Conte del Graal" of Chrestien de Troyes and his continuators, a vast poetic compilation of some 60,000 verses, composed between 1180 and 1240, and the Middle High German epic poem "Parzival" of Wolfram von Eschenbach, written between 1205 and 1215, and based, according to Wolfram's statement, on the French poem of a certain Kyot (Guiot) of Provence, which, however, is not extant and the very existence of which is doubtful. To these may be added the Welsh folk-tales or "Mabinogion" known to us only from manuscripts of the thirteenth century, though the material is certainly older, and the English poem "Sir Percyvelle," of the fifteenth century. Of the Early History versions the oldest is the metrical trilogy of Robert de Boron, composed between 1170 and 1212, of which only the first part, the "Joseph d'Arimathie," and a portion of the second, the "Merlin," are extant. We have, however, a complete prose version, preserved in the so-called Didot manuscript. The most detailed history of the Grail is in the "Grand St. Graal," a bulky French prose romance of the first half of the thirteenth century, where we are told that Christ Himself presented to a pious hermit the book concerning this history. Besides these versions we have three French prose romances, also from the thirteenth century, which, though concerned chiefly with the quest, give also an account of the history of the sacred vessel. Of these the most notable is the "Queste del St. Graal," well known to English readers because it was embodied almost entire in Malory's "Morte d' Arthur." The others are the so-called "Didot Perceval" or "La petite queste" and the lengthy and prolix "Perceval le Gallois," also known as "Perlesvaus."
The poem of Chrestien, regarded by many as the oldest known Grail romance, tells of Perceval's visit to the Grail castle, where he sees a Graal borne in by a damsel. Its accompaniments are a bleeding lance and a silver plate. It is a precious vessel set with jewels, and so resplendent as to eclipse the lights of the hall. All the assembled knights show it reverence. Mindful of an injunction not to inquire too much, Perceval does not ask concerning the significance of what he sees, and thereby incurs guilt and reproach. Undoubtly Chrestien meant to relate the hero's second visit to the castle, when he would have put the question and received the desired information. But the poet did not live to finish his story, whether the explanation of the Graal, offered by the continuators, is that which Chrestien what the Graal signifies; in his version it has no pronounced religious character. On the other hand, in the Early History versions it is invested with the greatest sanctity. It is explained as the dish from which Christ ate the Paschal lamb with his disciples, which passed into possession of Joseph of Arimathea, and was used by him to gather the Precious Blood of Our Saviour, when His body was taken from the Cross. It becomes identified with the Chalice of the Eucharist. The lance is explained as the one with which Longinus pierced Our Lord's side, and the silver plate becomes the paten covering the chalice. The quest in these versions assumes a most sacred character, the atmosphere of chivalric adventure in Chrestien's poem yields to a militant asceticism, which insists not only on the purity of the quester, but, in some versions (Queste, Perlesvaus), on his virginity. In the "Queste" and "Grand St. Graal," moreover, the hero is not Perceval but the maiden-knight, Galaad. But the other knights of the Round Table are made to participate in the quest.
The early history of the Grail is intimately connected with the story of Joseph of Arimathea. When he is cast into prison by the Jews, Christ appears to him and gives him the vessel, through which he is miraculously sustained for forty-two years, until liberated by Vespasian. The Grail is then brought to the West, to Britain, either by Joseph and Josephes, his son (Grand St. Graal), or by Alain one of his kin (Robert de Boron). Galaad (or Perceval) achieves the quest; after the death of its keeper the Grail vanishes. According to the version of the "Perlesvaus" Perceval is removed, no one knows whither, by a ship with white sails on which is displayed a red cross. In the Guiot-Wolfram version we meet with a conception of the Grail wholly different from that of the French romances. Wolfram conceives of it as a precious stone, lapsit exillis (i.e. lapis or lapsi ex caelis?) of special purity, possessing miraculous powers conferred upon it and sustained by a consecrated Host which, on every Good Friday, a dove brings down from heaven and lays down upon it. The angels who remained neutral during the rebellion of Lucifer were its first guardians; then it was brought to earth and entrusted to Titurel, the first Grail king. It is guarded in the splendid castle of Munsalvaesche (mons salvationis or silvaticus?) by itself and nourished by its miraculous food-giving power.
The relationship of the Grail versions to each other, especially that of Chrestien to those of Robert de Boron and the "Queste," is a matter of dispute. Nor is their relative chronology certain. But in all these versions the legend appears in an advanced state of development, the preceeding phases of which are not attested by literary monuments, and therefore, can only be conjectured. The origin of the legend is involved in obscurity, and scholars are divided in their views on this point. An Oriental, a Celtic, and a purely Christian origin have been claimed. But the Oriental parallels, like the sun-table of the Ethiopians, the Persian cup of Jamshid, the Hindu paradise, Cridavana, are not very convincing, and Wolfram's statement, that Kyot's source was an Arabic manuscript of Toledo, is open to grave doubt. It is different with the Celtic story. There are undoubtly Celtic elements in the legend as we have it; the Perceval story is probably, and the Arthurian legend certainly, of Celtic origin, and both of these legends intimately connected with the quest story. Talismans, such as magic lances and food-giving vessels figure prominently in Celtic myths and folk-tales. According to this theory the "Mabinogion," with its simple story of vengeance by means of talismans and devoid of religious significance, would yield the version nearest to the original form of the legend. Back of the quest-story would be some pre-Christian tale of a hero seeking to avenge the injury done to a kinsman. The religious element would then be of secondary origin, and would have come into the legend when the old vengeance-tale was fused with the legend of Joseph of Arimathea, which is essentially a legend of the conversion of Britain.
Those who maintain the theory of a purely Christian origin regard the religious element in the story as fundamental and trace the leading motifs to Christian ideas and conceptions. It is derived from the apocryphal Gospel of Nicodemus, which is known to have had a great vogue in the twelfth century, paricularly in Britain. There we read how Joseph, whom the Jews had imprisoned, is miraculously fed by Christ Himself . Additional traits were supplied by the "Vindicta Salvatoris," the legendary account of the destruction of Jerusalem. Furthermore, Joseph was confused with the Jewish historian, Josephus, whose liberation by Titus is narrated by Suetonius. The food-producing properties of the vessel can be explained, without resorting to Celtic parallels, by the association of the Grail with the Sacrament of the Eucharist, which gives spiritual nourishment to the faithful. The purely Christian legend which thus had arisen was brought into contact with the traditional evangelization of Britain, and then developed on British soil, in Wales, and thus the Celtic stamp, which it undeniably bears, is accounted for. In connection with the legendary conversion of Britain it is noteworthy that the literary accounts of this event are connected with the famous Abbey of Glastonbury, which is also intimately associated with the legend of Arthur, Glastonbury being identified in William of Malmesbury's account with the mythic Avalon. So scholars are inclined to connect this British sanctuary with the origin of the Grail romances. Possibly Walter Map, who died as Archdeacon of Oxford in 1210, and to whom is ascribed the authorship of a Grail-Lancelot cycle, got his information from that abbey. The first Grail romances was then probably written in Latin and became the basis for the work of Robert de Boron, who was an English knight under King Henry II, and a contemporary of Chrestien and of Map.
The fully developed Grail legend was later on still further connected with other legends, as in Wolfram's poem with that of Lohengrim, the swan-knight, and also with that of Prester John, the fabled Christian monarch of the East. Here also the story of Klinschor, the magician, was added. After the Renaissance the Grail legend, together with most medieval legends, fell into oblivion, from which it was rescued when the Romantic movement set in at the beginning of the nineteenth century. The most famous modern versions are Tennyson's "Holy Grail" in the "Idylls of the King" (1869), and Wagner's music-drama, the festival-play, "Parsifal," produced for the first time at Bayreuth in 1882.
A word as to the attitude of the Church towards the legend. It would seem that a legend so distinctively Christian would find favour with the Church. Yet this was not the case. Excepting Helinandus, clerical writers do not mention the Grail, and the Church ignored the legend completely. After all, the legend contained the elements of which the Church could not approve. Its sources are in apocryphal, not in canonical, scripture, and the claims of sanctity made for the Grail were refuted by their very extravagance. Moreover, the legend claimed for the Church in Britain an origin well nigh as illustrious as that of the Church of Rome, and independent of Rome. It was thus calculated to encourage and to foster any separatist tendencies that might exist in Britain. As we have seen, the whole tradition concerning the Grail is of late origin and on many points at variance with historical truth.
The "Queste" was edited by Furnivall, "La Queste del Saint Graal" (Roxburghe Club, London, 1864), also the Grand St. Graal under the title "Seynt Graal or the Sank Ryal", etc. (Roxburghe Club, London, 1861-63). The Perlesvaus is in Potvin's edition of Chrestien, I (Mons, 1866); the Didot Perceval in Hucher, "Le Saint Graal" (Le Mans, 1874-78). Robert de Boron's poem was edited by Michel, "Le roman du St. Graal" (Bordeaux, 1841), Malory's "Morte D'Arthur" by Sommer (London, 1889-91), and the Perlesvaus rendered into English by Evans, "The High History of the Holy Grail" (London, 1898). (See WOLFRAM VON ESCHENBACH.)

About this page

APA citation. Remy, A.F.J. (1909). The Holy Grail. In The Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company. Retrieved December 3, 2017 from New Advent:
MLA citation. Remy, Arthur F.J. "The Holy Grail." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 6. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1909. 3 Dec. 2017 <>.
Transcription. This article was transcribed for New Advent by Joseph P. Thomas. In memory of Hattie Ratajezak.
Ecclesiastical approbation. Nihil Obstat. September 1, 1909. Remy Lafort, Censor. Imprimatur. +John M. Farley, Archbishop of New York.
Contact information. The editor of New Advent is Kevin Knight. My email address is webmaster at Regrettably, I can't reply to every letter, but I greatly appreciate your feedback — especially notifications about typographical errors and inappropriate ads.

Copyright © 2012 by Kevin Knight. Dedicated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

Friday, December 1, 2017



Ain't it just like the night to play tricks when you're tryin' to be so quiet? We sit here stranded, though we're all doin' our best to deny it And Louise holds a handful of rain, temptin' you to defy it Lights flicker from the opposite loft In this room the heat pipes just cough The country music station plays soft But there's nothing, really nothing to turn off
Just Louise and her lover so entwined
And these visions of Johanna that conquer my mind
In the empty lot where the ladies play blindman's bluff with the key chain And the all-night girls they whisper of escapades out on the "D" train We can hear the night watchman click his flashlight Ask himself if it's him or them that's insane Louise, she's all right, she's just near She's delicate and seems like the mirror But she just makes it all too concise and too clear That Johanna's not here The ghost of 'lectricity howls in the bones of her face Where these visions of Johanna have now taken my place
Now, little boy lost, he takes himself so seriously He brags of his misery, he likes to live dangerously And when bringing her name up He speaks of a farewell kiss to me He's sure got a lotta gall to be so useless and all Muttering small talk at the wall while I'm in the hall How can I explain? It's so hard to get on And these visions of Johanna, they kept me up past the dawn
Inside the museums, infinity goes up on trial Voices echo this is what salvation must be like after a while But Mona Lisa musta had the highway blues You can tell by the way she smiles See the primitive wallflower freeze When the jelly-faced women all sneeze Hear the one with the mustache say, "Jeez, I can't find my knees" Oh, jewels and binoculars hang from the head of the mule But these visions of Johanna, they make it all seem so cruel
The peddler now speaks to the countess who's pretending to care for him Sayin', "Name me someone that's not a parasite and I'll go out and say a prayer for him" But like Louise always says "Ya can't look at much, can ya man?" As she, herself, prepares for him And Madonna, she still has not showed We see this empty cage now corrode Where her cape of the stage once had flowed The fiddler, he now steps to the road He writes ev'rything's been returned which was owed On the back of the fish truck that loads While my conscience explodes The harmonicas play the skeleton keys and the rain And these visions of Johanna are now all that remain
Una Forsyth