The Gnostics Knew

that life is a kind of extraordinary rendition:

A prison sentence at a mysterious location for which there is no named crime.
There is no due process, and you will never be read your rights.
You don't get a lawyer, and the world is free to torture you,
which it does, with apparent and perverse delight,
and in the end, the sentence is always death.

But all the world's best books
(and some of the worst ones)
were written in prison cells,
so get to work.

The world is apparently a place where you are forced to take a break
from being blandly perfect,
which is what all untried souls are.

We become what we become
because the world, bored on a porch,
takes its pocket knife out, and begins to whittle,
paring away at our uncarved blocks,
relieving us of our perfections.

—Carson Reed, March 2010