Paul StJohn Mackintosh is a Scottish author, poet, journalist, games writer, and media professional. Born in 1961, he was educated at Trinity College, Cambridge, has lived and worked in Asia and Central Europe, and currently lives in France near Geneva.

Paul has four books of poetry, two short story collections, and two novels in print so far, and his
Lovecraftian and dark fiction, and criticism, has appeared in numerous formats and journals worldwide, including Occult Detective Magazine, Weirdbook, the Los Angeles Review of Books, Strange Horizons, the Financial Times, the UK Independent, the Times Literary Supplement, Arts of Asia, Strange Horizons, A Broad Scot, and elsewhere.

Paul has translated from Japanese and Romanian, and is a former Executive Committee member of the Translators Association of the Society of Authors of Great Britain. He was rated #1 of “The 12 Publishing Shakers you should be Following” by The Independent Publishing Magazine. He is also the official clan poet of Clan Mackintosh.



How many artists may have caught a ghost
unwittingly, and have been left to ponder
what happened to that figure over yonder
seen at the time, but only known ex post

– Charles Rennie, in the place he painted most,
his last resort, far from the demi-monde,
the Hotel du Commerce in Port Vendres
near Collioure on the Vermilion Coast.

Strangely enough, the phantom was his own,
turned upside down, reflected in seawater,
sealing the final ruling without quarter;

long absent from the Glasgow School of Art,
he left as the assignee of his heart
the Palace of the Queens of Aragon.


Late in the Sun King’s palace you may spy
the dim glint of an ancient basket hilt
and flicker of a spectral tartan kilt,
after the hordes of tourists have passed by:

one of the many phantoms of Versailles,
a Scottish Guard, steadfast up to the hilt,
true to the Auld Alliance, his blood spilt
for a lost cause, keeping his post for aye;

a last survival of that elite corps,
senior company of the Gardes du Corps,
lost in the hall of mirrors of the king;

the chateaux gifted les fiers Ecossais
—Concressault, Aubigny and Langeais—
all forfeit, just the spirit, lingering.


Black Annis, the proverbial Leicester hag,
had a blue face, long teeth, and iron claws;
laired in a cave, Black Annis’ Bower Close,
carved with her own claws from a sandstone crag.

The locals made small windows lest she drag
her juicy infant prey clean out of doors;
hearing the fearsome gnashing of her jaws,
they’d bar the shutters tight with spar and sprag.

Some scholars speculate Black Annis was
inspired by a medieval anchoress
named Agnes Scott; I’d rather hold that she

was Anu, cognate of Kali and Hel,
the Celtic goddess in her worst, most fell
Dark Mother guise, devouring progeny.


Night falls, trams halt,
the points’ clatter sleeps;
the last lamp casts its amber arc
on tar, asphalt
and girls bowling hoops.

Subfusc street scenes,
dark stations sans trains,
fill with somnambulistic dreams:
cool nudes’ white lines
and bare skeletons.

Above flagged squares,
still marshalling yards
and stark arcades of plaster casts
spread wires, fine-drawn
against lilac clouds.