Dostoevsky: (The Brothers Karamazov)

January 01, 2021

A man to span an existential abyss; and that

Lair below,

A floor where skulks his clamant, swank, cerebral demon

Craving in-waiting a tomfool intellectual foot

Should shoot off

Tactlessly slither, a rattle of breccia rain-storming

Forewarning: Here he comes!

A man astride, on land and land; between the vacuous air

Empty and vastly void

His wits effect his stay by settled mettled hand

Concerned to explore the contours and conditions

In this bitter Sheol

Arched-over scans, observes, by intricate inspection

This magister and intimate of noble speculation

That catacomb where lacerated men are cordoned taut

Fixtures of doubt; not anchored, harried scrabbling things

Claws grasping, clasp to miss, the gravid solid sweet spot

Laughter informs the demon makes cheer near below

Fallen men caught on this world’s wall of cruel contusions

Strictured by sure irresolution, too far torn to crawl

And structure a climb sublime out of this creviced bottom

He flexures and strains to oversee, explain to men their pure


Stares and considers; this bleak terrain is a disputed land

Cleft between seams beatific, stratagems infernal

Lunge cumbered luggers towing on their iron

Unannealed impediments

The leaden load of man that hangs and drags unto

Our solo inhumations

Though up would rive the soul, would struggle, make

The jump accomplished


Agon, privation, what more can be than measurement,

Might one man, mortal tower, undertake?

He draws the map, enumerates in verbal melancholy

The lacerations

Observes the absurd, and separates the turgid complications

Watching that hornéd demon wriggling reason

On a pin

Waiting on resolution; behovely Jesus come again

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