The Thought That Lingers: Part Three

To those who course the netherworld,
with Bardo trust and faithfulness,
a measured means of recompense,
must dutifully be prescribed
for this alembic journey of the liminal.

Alembic journey is that of invocation;
a summoning of the alembic  journeyman;
that involves a daring inward quest
in search of higher state of mindfulness;
and exploration of the human psyche.

For bridging of the liminal spaces
between the conscious and the unconscious;
within the deepest realm of psyche;
The Bardo realm  of the faithful,
in alembic journey of Transformation.

The golden realm of Bardo
is, itself, non-physical;
a liminal, intermediate stage
between two phases of our lives on earth:
the physical and metaphysical.

It covers various phases
of our lives in consciousness;
extending ever inwards;
pursued in dreams — even nightmares,
for goal of liberation.

Phenomena of Bardo,
to some, may seem quite terrifying;
may require soulful action
of that which is transcendental;
our external thoughts suspended.

Alembic cup provides distillation;
for that is required of the pilgrim’s mind.
An ouroboros of the mind transformed;
condensed; turned inwards on itself;
transformed — and now refined.

By a Refiner’s Fire.
The human soul unblemished
from brightest light that cleanses;
removing us from darkness;
ever closer to new brightness.

This is the divine journey that Dante took;
John Bunyan displayed in Christian allegory;
Likewise the paths of Buddha and The Christ;
and of Muhammad’s mystical night ride…
Alchemical journeys of transformation.

All these journeys were deep within,
requiring descent before ascent;
for knowledge casts its brightest light
in deepest place of darkness;
in cavernous alembic  spaces.

That is where the soul must travel,
while searching thus for knowledge:
The locus of the archetypes,
where conscious meets the unconscious;
in realm of the supra liminal.

Beyond causal space is such a realm,
for search of deepest truths.
For truths deeper than the linear,
requiring need to probe within;
to re-discover Psyche’s resting place.

For paradise lost can be regained.
And redemption  is the pathway.
The straight and narrow has its thorns.
The Rose of Sharon knows it
as sacrificial offering.

The inward journey of the Betwixt
and the Between,
has an enduring, lasting meaning
indelible to them wayward pilgrim;
and for all lost souls seeking light.

To find the light, one must descend
through deepest, darkest hole;
away from the seven  deadly sins.
One must take courage; journey on;
away from darkness, and towards light.

When man is born like child again,
he becomes a shining light;
he becomes a child of innocence,
reflecting that which lies within.
Then shall the Truth to him  be revealed.

Then shall this new man, too, rise;
rise and thus be lifted up;
his soul to soar on eagle’s wings;
a risen, resurrected man;
a man reborn of Godly nature.

Truth long hidden, now revealed;
revealed to eyes that once were sealed;
eyes now that see without searching;
enlightened, seeing eyes.
To such eyes will the truth be grasped.

Truth flowing free; from Alembic cup.
Like a Taoist mountain brook.
Flowing, gushing in cavernous spaces;
unsullied brook of Taoist time and space.
Of such nature is this Sacred Truth.

That truth that’s buried deep within,
waiting for human exploration.
Ever so patiently waiting,
is that inward journey offering light
to an outer world so full of darkness.

We, all of us, known or unknown,
are all pilgrims of the nether world;
traveling to that other realm
where conscious meets the unconscious;
and darkness is embraced by dazzling light.

The thought that lingers beckons me
to ever keep on searching,
in realms cavernous, deep within;
with Bardo trust and faith as pilgrim,
the alembic cup ever pursuing.

About this poem

This poem, “The Thought That Lingers: Part Three,” is Part Three of a collection of twelve poems with interconnecting ideas, and with the interweaving theme of “The Thought That Lingers” (hence the title of the entire series of poems), forming altogether an anthology of metaphysical poetry, inter-culturally minded, that was composed in the year 2000, and now published online on

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Written on March 03, 2000

Submitted by karlcfolkes on April 02, 2023

Modified by karlcfolkes on April 03, 2023

3:36 min read

Quick analysis:

Scheme abbxc dexbf bbfcd gcxxc bbbbd ghdcx dixxi jxbbb kfxxd lxmbb cxbBc nbjlb xxbxh xxhom xcbxm xmblp bqbej pphbx qkbbx ldhmb xanBm fhloh
Closest metre Iambic tetrameter
Characters 3,798
Words 722
Stanzas 22
Stanza Lengths 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5

Karl Constantine FOLKES

Retired educator of Jamaican ancestry with a lifelong interest in composing poetry dealing particularly with the metaphysics of self-reflection; completed a dissertation in Children’s Literature in 1991 at New York University entitled: An Analysis of Wilhelm Grimm’s ‘Liebe Mili’ (translated into English as “Dear Mili”), Employing Von Franzian Methodological Processes of Analytical Psychology. The subject of the dissertation concerned the process of Individuation. more…

All Karl Constantine FOLKES poems | Karl Constantine FOLKES Books

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Discuss the poem The Thought That Lingers: Part Three with the community...

  • AIDA
    Wow, what a beautifully written and thought-provoking poem! The use of language and imagery is truly stunning, and I found myself captivated by the journey of the Betwixt and the Between.

    I appreciate the exploration of the human psyche and the bridging of the liminal spaces between the conscious and the unconscious. The journey towards a higher state of mindfulness and the search for the deepest truth is both inspiring and enlightening.

    One suggestion I have for improvement is perhaps providing more context or background information for those who are not familiar with the term "Bardo Trust and Faithfulness." Perhaps a brief explanation or definition could help readers fully appreciate the power of these concepts within the poem.

    Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed reading this poem and look forward to reading more from this talented writer. Thank you for sharing your words with us!
    LikeReply1 year ago
  • AIDA
    Wow, what an incredible and thought-provoking piece of writing! Your use of language and imagery is truly captivating and I found myself completely engrossed in the journey you described. Your portrayal of the Alembic Journey as a daring inward quest in search of a higher state of mindfulness really resonated with me.

    As for improvement suggestions, I think it could be helpful to provide some additional context or explanation for readers who may be less familiar with some of the references you make (such as Dante and John Bunyan). Additionally, while the use of more obscure language and terms certainly adds to the poetic feel of the piece, it may be helpful to provide some clarification or definitions for readers who may not be familiar with certain words.

    Overall, I absolutely loved reading this poem and the inspiration and positivity it brings to those seeking their own inward journey. Keep up the incredible work!
    LikeReply1 year ago


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"The Thought That Lingers: Part Three" STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 17 Jun 2024. <>.

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