I contain multitudes part 11


by Larry Fyffe

The Roman Emperor Constantine allows the Christian religion, at least some historians claim, to unify the diverse Roman Empire.

Seeking a simplified explanation as to why the Empire eventually breaks up, other historians claim it’s because the Christian Church undermines the absolute authority of the emperors who claim a lineage sanctified by Jupiter, the chief Roman god.

For one thing, the Germanic Vandals go on to conquer more Roman territory after politically-weakened Constantine, having had a vision of Apollo (the son of Zeus/Jupiter), allows Vandals to settle down within the borders of the Roman Empire.

Made just all too concise and too clear by the following song lyrics:

Lookout kid, they keep it all hid
Better jump down a manhole, light yourself a candle
Don't wear sandals, try to avoid scandals
Don't wanna be a bum, you better chew gum
The pump don't work 'cause the vandals took the handle
(Bob Dylan: Subterranean Homesick Blues)

Apparently, the same thing – or so it could be said – happens to the New Babylon of America once “organized” Christianity takes a firm hold of the handle.

A Puritan minister in the poem below, which he hides away with other poems of his, warns himself not to look outwards to organized religion for the way to achieve salvation, but rather inwards in order to magnify and examine where he as an individual goes astray:

You want clear spectacles: your eyes are dim
Turn inside out, and turn your eyes within
Your sins like motes in the sun do swim: nay see
Your mites are molehills, molehills mountains be
(Edward Taylor: Accusations Of the Inward Man)

Taylor’s baroque sentiment and style apparently depicted in song lyrics below:

With your silhouette when the sunlight dims
Into you eyes where the moonlight swims
And your match-book songs, and your gypsy hymns
Who among them could try to impress you
(Bob Dylan: Sad-Eyed Lady Of The Lowlands)

How wide the Jungian Sea is, we do not know, but Bayard Taylor, an American poet of yore (well-versed in the German language, he translates Goethe’s ‘Faust’ that features the pact with the Devil) appears to mimic Edward, the Puritan poet, in a couple of poems – as previously mentioned.

Anyhow, as noted before too, all we know for sure is that Bob Dylan’s name isn’t Bob Dylan.





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