Damnation churns within his breast,
the night's events at havoc's leisure;
harrowed light dimpled by shadow, and our man wrest
from any measure
Of repute and sanctity to his fame.
He knows not how in love he thought was he,
when all belonged first to the Devil's name,
and virtue belongs to wretched memory.
His secret he knows he has to tell:
run to confession and seek out the knoll;
pray for mercy for this earner of Hell,
and Hail Mary to keep his mind whole.
"Father, Father," he cries in distress.
"Upon this night I have taken a life.
The blood on my hands, and on my knife less,
gives me fear of the law, yet I suffer no strife
Within my soul for the woman I've maimed
and sinned for. Hear, I have loved and lost,
and under the moon mourned the virtue I've shamed;
but blame not only myself, Father, for I died first
by her frost!
T'was only the heat of her flesh that made her warm;
She was a deceitful harlot, a woman of ways;
a temptress, and a villainess. Her lack of conform
to top society form first made me sway,
When she bared her flesh.
I thought it ambitious she was
one foot forward, but still was I to guess
that she was no suffragette. With men's applause
She buffeted laws, and took money paid
day-by-day - and night! Alas, I played the fool,
poor blind fool, who made a willing trade
in sense for love, and did not care I was a tool!"
The priest is piqued, his interest sworn,
and softly he urges the man to go on;
his curiosity beats back his scorn,
and the tale of the murder is born:
"I was blind and trussed up,
too love-drunk to see her for who she was.
I longed for her to be mine; to share the same cup,
but she acted coy and playful without pause.
Spurning my passions, and breaking my pride,
who would wish for a woman so wanton?
I! And every other man far or wide,
to feed their appetites until they were gone.
And back they came, again and again,
lusty as ever and ripe with greed.
Oh, how I did try to ignore these men,
even granted stupidity to slake my need.
Who was I to suspect I'd soon be slew?
Stabbed in the back by a friend-in-need
(and his own needs did he tend to)!
Foul bastard fiend who took swift heed
To the art of petit mort. And after his lay,
he ran to me with his news, to run my heart through.
A necessary betrayal so I'd not waste another day,
so he said, in fooling myself to see false as true.
He forced me to realise her other men - not lovers',
just labourers who carved their niche in women;
easily discarded skirts, not material for mothers,
those lost souls making a living by sinning.
At his words I roared and I wailed,
defaming his name, and his own mother, too!
Upon his head my fists almost hailed,
but my anger sought more than bloodshed: murder! From who?
The slut! The tramp! The villainess!
And there, pacing, crazed, I made a vow
to take the life of that wench, nothing less!
'Get out, I screamed, get out now-'
With the force of a devil I threatened my man:
the revelation of the traitor would not be forgiven,
and soon enough, he was startled into a plan:
to escape London, thus he was driven,
That I might not strike him into submission,
nor offer death's path to show him Hell's views.
But it wouldn't do to lose sight of my vision:
to rid my heart entirely of its ruse.
Away the traitor fled, his heart hammering
in his chest; and then and there my plans begun.
Spinning to days and weeks of the torture I'd bring
to the she-devil who had me made the fool of her fun.
I plotted and planned and piloted
the ideas of my madness and rage:
colluding with my dark intentions that derided
she who used her flesh to earn her wage.
My scalpels were soon ready (with a rope, just in case).
Then I brooded upon the hours awaiting the sun to drop,
when I would dress with the mask of nightmare's face:
the time was near for my fair lady's heart to stop."
The man stoops forward with a flushed brow,
and the priest's eyes upon him, eager and aglow.
"Talk, my child, what makes you hesitate now?
Upon this night what misery did you sew?"
"Father, I can't! The act is too heinous.
I'm quite sure you'd quickly be sick where you sit!"
Thus said, the man offers a grin so outrageous,
the priest shudders to hear Hell's furnaces lit.
Pushing forward with courage and vigour,
the priest cajoles the maddened confessor:
"Your story needs to be told, now consider
the guilt if you continue to play the devil's lesser.
With your heart full of wrong-doing,
is it not enough your desire's caused trouble?
You won't care for the hangman debuting,
when you realise your soul will pay double.
Now speak up and keep going: tell your
tale of the crime's confession, or else-!
The devil will beat the police to your door;
you'll be left with nothing but your health,
And it won't last you to the gates of Hell!"
The man steadies himself, takes in a breath;
he focuses his mind, and brings himself to tell
to the priest all that is left:
"It was this morn I visited her
with a scar on my heart.
I had penned letters to lure
out my hatred, and with my love part,
In a desperate attempt, a final bid to quell
the hunger in me that called for
the sordid death of the girl.
Yet approaching her window, Father, hear what I saw:
An ambitious client's visit,
and the Devil in the both of them,
growling for more. My own soul was hit,
and I knew my heart condemned to the binding
Eternal passions of sin.
Struck down to the second tempest,
to its blustering torments within:
this was the house in which I'd invest.
Thus I departed,
absent of good intent.
Unable to end what I'd started,
I prepared for Hellish descent.
Through the day, my torments tightened their ties,
coiling like a noose around my mind.
Her phantom moans, droning like Beelzebub's flies
beseeched me to wait until night, and find
her corner of London town.
I could already see her red-lighting:
flesh-for-sale! Oh, but I'd drag her down,
and make her scream; make her sing.
I went where I had to, and thereupon did wait,
surely an exhibition on the patience of a saint.
Then the sun fell, and the moon did night sate,
and at last! Perfect opportunity to blend the paint
Of the devil, and make a canvas of my soul.
Swiftly rid of the anguish of wrath I became,
and parted from sorrow, I knew myself whole.
T'was then I newly discovered my name.
But none of this before I'd had my way;
and though they'd not met before, my knife was not shy.
I soon got into the sport of making her pay
the price for making me believe a lie.
Out I cut her organs of maternal use,
that failed to thrive.
The shoddy matter that had taken so much abuse,
with no intent to cradle anything alive.
Then I set upon her renewed, for her blood to be drained,
and listened to the screams drown in her throat.
Then on the strike of silence, my deed done and passion waned,
I fast fled the scene to a location remote.
Now hear I am, your visitor, priest,
with my story done, you'll find my confession's complete.
There's no more darker tale in the world to feast
yourself upon, than my terrible feat.
But you know I must go; I've yet to see the gallows,
and don't intend for an introduction
with death from my country's fellows.
I don't much care for the noose's swinging action."
So said, the man rises, but the priest quickly beckons:
"Stay, stay. I've need for one last detail!"
But the man gives a grimace, and soon starts to reckon
that the priest intends for the police on his trail.
"Back away," he snarls, "do stay seated, Father.
I've no longer a need for the company
of God's watchman or the Devil's martyr.
Do keep your seat, and let me run free
Of holy ground and sanctimonious rite.
I've arrived and given you the story of a life;
getting ready to depart now, I just think it might
be a matter of you wanting me to see the afterlife."
The priest is shocked, and stupefied:
reeling in terror and scared for his soul... yet
his curiosity won't let him be denied
the killer's moniker; and how he's eager and set
To question the monster 'til dawn.
In a tone meek and clamouring, he does enquire
of whose confession he has drawn:
"Please, who might the man be with such grim ire?"
Smirking with glee, though still flighty with nerves,
the murderer complies to the priest sitting agape.
"Have it known, though, I've got no reserves
in introducing you to your God if you stop my escape."
So, set to the flee, and the door already ajar,
the priest assures the villain he won't have him dragged back.
"I quite understand you may have no fear of Lucifer,"
his words as he parts, "but you'd best learn to fear the name of Saucy Jack."