Jacob Brogan

The world is always ending

Reading Spinoza in December

To see the crystalline composition of ice

You must step on it. Watch the way it fractures

Beneath your boot. These jagged spokes

Speak the radial secrets of its nature.

Ice strives to shatter. It desires only

The lugged force of a foot descending.


In this there is nothing of the occult.

What is material remains so. What is

Solid declines to sublime. Broken ice

Is still ice. Bringing this to light will not

Invite the warmth of winter sun.


Studying the fragments, you might

Imagine you can intuit the whole

From which they come. This edge

Fits into that wedge: This piece and that one

Obviously rhyme. Still, something is missing,

The very effort of understanding

Having reduced hard shapes to powder.