Komal Mahmood
2 min readJul 9, 2021


What keeps poetry from falling into the realm of prose is that visceral, evocative imagery; one that is too fragmented and obscure to not be unsettling.

Not that good prose is incapable of the same, but in essence a short story or a novel cannot be too abstruse. It will, of necessity, culminate into a conclusion.

Baudelaire’s incredible “The Flowers of Evil” is one such poetry collection that employs a grotesque yet impeccable image of the lower class of French society, whose people lived on the daily a life no less than a regular descent into hell and which the art of fin de siecle is so well known for. When lush language describes utter debauchery in its basest, most profound manner…that is true art!

This work titled “The Katabasis” deals with a descent into the uncharted terrains of the psyche. Katabasis is Greek for descent and as such need not be a hero’s descent into the underworld. Wherever the human mind feels most at unease and discomfort is a hell on its own.

The description says:

A descent into the psyche’s crevices of madness; where in conscious states man refuses to travel. Drug induced, psychedelic, hypnotic states of mind bring forth an impetuous onslaught of burning sensations…
The separation between the divine and the mundane is a mere strip of cerebral matter. Heightened states of consciousness can unite the soul with that which it longs for.
A collection of poems that delve into the inner recesses of mind where logic dissolves, Nietzsche becomes Tiresias, Orpheus assists on a chthonic journey, the ancient Sibyll eulogizes the elixir of life.

THE KATABASIS is out on Amazon in both eBook and paperback. Get your own copy at

Happy Reading!



Komal Mahmood

I’ve got plenty to say, but few words to say it...