Since 1996, the Graveworm Press PO Box has received a random smattering of notes and drawings from an unknown source identified only as "Grifas," starting in 1996 with a manuscript of poems. In May of 2003 another complete manuscript appeared, sparking my desire to finally figure out who Grifas is, or at least glean what it is the author hopes to achieve.
In the beginning...
When you have a PO Box that is made widely known, receiving anonymous items is not unusual. I have received lists of shortwave radio frequencies (most of which only tuned in noise), photographs of UFOs, and even a 25-page confession from a man who claimed to be a government operative involved in mind control experiments. Most are entertaining on some level, and I always give them at least a read-through, just in case they contain something worth sharing. Most, however, are not even worthy of a second read. But when a manuscript written by "Grifas" arrived in early 1996, I couldn't help but give it a second look.
- February 1996 A manuscript of poems arrives at the Graveworm Press PO Box, along with the cover and riddle. The MS was typed on white paper; the cover and riddle computer printed on light blue card stock. A typed note read in full: "It needs to be known, and must be distributed at no charge. Cover and key included." I assume the "key" is the text on card stock and is some kind of riddle that, when cracked, will explain ... well ... something.
- July 1996 The table of Grifasian Phonemes arrives, with a note that read, in full: "Language is spoken, not written. Listen to the Tower of Babel." Digging into language associations with the Tower of Babel, I couldn't help but see "Grifas" may be right.
- October 1996 graveworm.com is born and 1999 CE is "published" as an e-book and assigned the ISBN 1-929309-05-8.
- June 1997 The table of the Emanation Heirarchy is delivered, with a typed note that read: "We're all saying the same thing. Synthesize faith. You know what I mean." Upon investigation in Bill Whitcomb's The Magicians' Companion, I again saw that Grifas may be right.
- 1998 No activity.
- February 1999 The "Dream Image" arrives with a typed note that read, in full: "From a dream."
- November 2000 The "November Collection" of three images arrives, with the particularly odd typed note that read, in full: "Self portraits. November."
- 2001 No activity. I actually fear Grifas was a millenniumist who had taken his own life or something, especially considering the first manuscript was titled 1999 CE.
- April 2002 The table of the Circadian Zodiac arrives, with no note. I assumed to understand an attempt by Grifas to help me consolidate the many conflicting zodiacs.
- Late 2002 When the ISBN database went online the author for 1999 CE was somehow changed from "Grifas" to "Joe Grifasi," a performance artist. There is no evidence whatsoever that "Grifas" is Joe Grifasi, and this computer glitch is indicative of nothing. I changed the author back to "Grifas."
- April 2003 A second manuscript of poems (The Laughing Sky) arrives at the Graveworm Press PO Box, with no cover and again with no note. Apparently "Grifas" is okay with what I've done with the previous mailings and feels that explanations are no longer necessary.
- March 2004 The full Grifas section is born at graveworm.com. My hope is that visitors can help answer some of the more perplexing questions about Grifas, namely: Who is Grifas? What does the riddle mean? And what is the author's work meant to achieve?