Although I’ve often thought about it, I have yet to write any reviews for my fellow Cunning Rustics, but I am compelled by this recent addition to my collection of periodicals. I convince myself that ‘keeper of knowledge’ sounds better than ‘hoarder of books’, but a rose by another name, still has no more space on his shelves. I am particularly proud of my collection of Heathen and Pagan periodicals dating back to the 1970’s. These include ‘The Odinist’, ‘Vor-Tru’ and ‘The Runestone’ magazines, as well as a host of other esoteric ‘zines, pamphlets and mimeographs. Without reservation, I declare that ’Fiddlers Green’ is one of the finest esoteric magazines for anyone who may consider themselves a Cunning Rustic.
Beautifully printed on weighty paper (70 lb. off-white vellum), with a cover of heavy sage green linen paper, the copper gilt title gleams from the page, like a sudden treasure happened across on a solitary ramble through some country field. That is precisely how to approach this unique publication. It should be read, at leisure, outdoors with a drink and sunshine at hand. Fiddlers Green denotes a place out of time, a haven rather than a heaven, where sailors, farmers and countrymen reside when slipping this mortal coil. No clouds, harps and piety, but a place of companionship, abundance and comfort. Writer and editor Clint Marsh has created a magazine that might well entertain the denizens of that mystical Elysium.
Some years back,I made a trip to California, and had the fortune to sink a pint at the Pelican Inn (named after Sir Francis Drake’s ship) at Muir Beach. There are many ‘British Pubs’ in the US, that fall very far off the mark indeed, but I can attest that The Pelican Inn is as proper a pub as I have found in this country. It was to my surprise on reading the first issue, that ‘Fiddler’s Green Peculiar Parish Magazine’ was conceived in that very beer garden by Mr Marsh.
Fiddler’s Green is a mix of esoteric journal and the old magazines my grandmother kept when I was a child, like The Post Office Magazine, and the original Country Life. It manages to avoid seeming anachronistic, however. This isn’t some steampunk re-imagining of a glorious Victorian past, but rather pays homage to a less vulgar time, maintaining the elements of art and writing that would appeal to any traditionalist. Articles such as ‘Where the Art Meets the Occult’ by Ken Henson are genuinely thought-provoking. Rima Staines’s ‘Rise and Root’ reads as a short manifesto for the Radical Traditionalist. At moments, reading Clint Marsh’s ‘The Kids Are All Rite: Traditionalism, Magic, Punk and “As-If”’ was an eerie reflection of my own teenage years.
Some articles are firmly tongue in cheek, and you can sense the mirth throughout. Between articles, you will find art (contemporary and ancient), book reviews, photography, poetry and even postal rates, and thankfully, few advertisements. Those advertisements that are there, are perfectly in keeping with the feel and flow of the publication.
The three issues I was sent were printed as special editions for the Occult Humanities conference. Admittedly, I have only read the first of the three volumes I have received, as i am relishing them slowly, like morsels of Turkish Delight. A quick glance through the other two volumes promises more of the same, and so, the fiddler’s merry tune plays on.
“At Fiddler’s Green, where seamen true
When here they’ve done their duty
The bowl of grog shall still renew
And pledge to love and beauty.”
The Dog Fiend; Or, Snarleyyow,
I am indebted to fellow writer Josh Buckley (TYR Journal) for bringing Fiddler’s Green to my attention and you may find copies for purchase here:
Or you can correspond with Clint Marsh at:
Fiddler’s Green Peculiar Parish Magazine
Clint Marsh, Editor
Post Office Box 10146
Berkeley, Calif. 94709