How to Make Goofer Dust for the Quelling of Enemies: A Modern Method by Juleigh Howard-Hobson


First you will need to find a dead body,
neatly buried. And you will need a spade.
wait for a dark moonless night if you can
but sometimes there is more of a hurry . . .
so don’t sweat it. Goofer Dust can be made
any time. If anyone stops you (plan

on it) lie. Or threaten them—with hoodoo
(they will not believe in it, but it still
tends to send a clear message of leave me
alone, I’m troublesome and scary). You
Will not, of course, dig up a corpse, you will
Just dig up some grave dirt. Leave a penny

or two as ‘payment’. Don’t touch the dirt with
your own hands (if you do, circle the grave
with plain salt or the spirit will follow
you home): use the spade to transfer the earth
into a plastic ziplock bag. (Please save
the sanctimony, we will not allow

any arguing about why we won’t
bring aesthetically pleasing jars and vials
into graveyards. We’re modern, twenty first
century practitioners of ancient
folk magic. We don’t need Hollywood style
props. Plastic works great. And it can’t get cursed,

because energies just bounce right off of
it. Well, as far as we know.) Anyway,
now that you have the dirt, carefully mix
it with Sulphur (Amazon sells the stuff),
plain salt, black pepper, anvil dust (some say
you can use magnets instead, but we nix

that; we like Etsy for our anvil dust),
add a dried venomous snake skin, with its
head (some don’t use the whole thing, but we think
it’s important—sloughed eye caps are a must),
three black cat bones, a few freeze dried insects,
urine powder (eBay) and one dried pink

baby mouse (as payment to the black cat),
grind it all up. Store your goofer dust in
tupperware (or if you want to, use your
aesthetically pleasing jars and vials). That’s
all there is. Goofer Dust. Easy as sin.
Nobody should mess with you anymore.


Juleigh Howard-Hobson lives besides the edge of the world, where secrets are whispered in the winds and words fling from the sky. She has been nominated for “The Best of the Net,” the Pushcart, the Elgin, and the Rhysling Awards. Her work can be found in Dreams & Nightmares, Eye to the Telescope, Polu Texni, Star*Line, Haunted Dollhouse, 34 Orchard, Audient Void, Midnight Echo, Siren’s Call, Noir Nation, The Lost Librarian’s Grave (Redwood Press), They Walk Among Us (Utah Horror Writer’s Association), and many other venues. Her latest collection is Curses, Black Spells and Hexes (Alien Buddha Press).

Published 8/25/22