THE SECRET – A. Crowley

This is excerpt from the last book of Aleister Crowley called


An Anthology of

O L L A = עללא = όλλα = 131 = SMAL = ΠAN
Anno Ixx in 0°  Dec. 22, 10:54 A.M.

*      *      *

Crowley’s „apologia“ for this book is given in one single paragraph, with one single strong blow:

„I have made this collection of short poems as diverse as possible; time and space have been asked their utmost range; every corner of the earth which has contributed to my delight, and every period of my life which has modulated my music, have lent a flower to this posy.

*      *      *


To Rudolf Steiner

Beneath the vine-tree and the fig
Where mortal cares may not intrude,
Although their brains are·bright and big,
On melon and on sucking-pig
Banquet the Great White Brotherhood.

Pupils of stamina and speed,
Fast as they learn, would learn still faster.
So (with meek diffidence indeed!)
The three Apprentices agreed
To ask His secret of the Master.

With the aplomb and savoir faire
Peculiar to Eastern races,
He took the Secret than and there,
(What, is not lawful to declare)
And thrust it rudely in their faces.

“A filthy insult!” screamed the first ;
The second smiled : “Ingenious blind!”
The youngest neither blessed nor cursed,
Contented to believe the worst –
That He had spoken all His mind.

The second earned the name of prig;
The first, the epithet of prude;
The third, as merry as a grig,
On melon and on sucking-pig
Feasts with the Great White Brotherhood.

Hermitage, Moscow.

P.S. My personal opinion is that this poem is written 1913 e.v., when Crowley was in Moscow, the same year when Liber XV (Gnostic Mass) and „Hymn to Pan“ were written by him.