The Book of Jade


Hello and many thanks for putting up a great website in I have to say it's fantastic & it's very interesting to once again to be able to read all about D.P Barnitz & his terribly darkened decadent & beautifully morbid poetry from the "cynical" Book Of Jade as H.P Lovecraft apparently wrote in his letters.

I fell in love (if love is the right word to associate with such funeral literature) with D.P Barnitz's decadent sonnets when I was reading a H.P Lovecraft fanzine entitled "Dagon" in possibly 1988.
This particular issue of Dagon featured an overview of D.P Barnitz & a critical essay of The Book of Jade by Mark Valentine together with several of Barnitz's poems and also some artwork which were all utterly inspiring to me!

What made the connection all the more special to me apart from the H.P Lovecraft link was that Mark Valentine made reference to Nick Blinko & his band Rudimentary Peni. I have been a great fan of Rudimentary Peni ever since I heard their EP played by John Peel on Radio 1 but I digress… From the essay it transpired that Nick Blinko had primarily made Mark Valentine aware of the existence of The Book of Jade.

Sometime later I was part of a band called Cathedral playing bass guitar & writing lyrics. We were basically a slow motion doom metal band inspired by Black Sabbath, Trouble, Candlemass, Saint Vitus & The Obsessed etc. Lyrically we were off kilter, lovelorn, depressed and nihilistic & dark humoured – maybe something young chaps in their early 20's shouldn't really be!

Our band logo came directly from the pages of that very Dagon fanzine – direct from The Book of Jade & photocopied by my good self with some Letraset which is rub down transfer lettering from a stationary shop! This was of course later embellished by a real artist!

It was while I was working on lyrics for a new song that Cathedral guitarist Adam Lehan had written, that I incorporated parts of Barnitz's poems "Requiem" & "Sombre Sonnet" with some of my own (and it has to be said Barnitz inspired) lyrics. It all seemed to fit – the music was to me - crushing, sad & powerful together with lovely mournful lyrics. Would it have been something that Mr. Barnitz may have appreciated? I would hope so. We did seem to have picked up on a semblance of his aura at the time.
This song I entitled "A Funeral Request (Ethereal Architect)". The song saw the light of day on The Forest of Equilibrium album which was released by Earache Records in 1991. Although I parted company with Cathedral in 1992 the band still perform "A Funeral Request" live.

I think Cathedral owes a considerable debt to D.P Barnitz & The Book Of Jade & I was very happy that I was able to credit him in the song credits. In some ways its magical how like finds likes even though something like 9 decades had passed.

May you Rest in Peace David Park Barnitz & thank you for the inspiration.

The lyrics for A Funeral Request (Ethereal Architect). (D.P Barnitz words are in bold)

White rose perfume go with thee
on thy way unto thy shaded tomb
low music doth fall
lightly as autumn leaves
about thy solemn pall.
Faint incense rises.

O'you, you fell away from me my love,
like all earthly things vanish
into death's cold mysteries.

Serpents marked with azure rings
cathedrals where rich shadows fall,
things strange curious solemn saviour.

You promised me laughter in autumn days, now I can't awake from this lucid haze.
I can't awake to laugh with you I'm so weary.
Claws upon my flesh and statues of lost souls dominate this house.
Angels have no pity,
their wings have turned to stone.
Come travel naked lovers
beyond all dimensions of Heaven
and lie enchanted forever
in the lucid garden of dreams.
In all animate sources and creations
of belief we travel seas of illusions
that begin at our dreams.
Ethereal architects masters of all faith.

Cathedral – first demo cover

Cathedral - logo

Lyrics from Forest Of Equilibrium insert

Lyrics from Forest Of Equilibrium CD booklet

Cathedral promo photograph

I still haven't seen a real copy of The Book of Jade though! Hopefully one day.
Ah well.
Kindest regards, Griff

Content © 2007 - 2008 The Book of Jade
Design © 2007 -2008 Thaumaturgic: Web Development