I just queued up Beowulf, checking out from my local library the recent Seamus Heaney translation that has reinvigorated the classic Old English epic poem. Reading it is something of an adventure into the world-view of Scandinavian warriors, ancestors of the Vikings; into Old English, the language of the poet and ancestor of modern English; into Ireland and Irish, the home and touchstone of the translator; and even into Tolkien's Middle Earth, as it was Tolkien who rescued Beowulf from the scholarly fog that hung over it before his 1936 essay Beowulf: The Monsters and the Critics.
Beowulf is epic poetry that we have in written form but which retains the cadence and syntax of orally transmitted verse. In the same class falls The Iliad and The Odyssey, much of the Old Testament, and Shakespeare (who wrote for the stage, after all). Interestingly, the Book of Mormon falls into this category too, more or less. The book was spoken (falling from the lips of Joseph Smith) before it was written (verbatim by scribes, then edited into verses with punctuation by copy editors at the printer's shop, and touched up ever since in successive editions). Joseph, we know, was a gifted storyteller as a youth who later matured into a fine preacher who could entertain audiences for hours.
Parallelism (of which chiasmus is one example) and alliteration appear in such transcribed oral poetry--these are devices storytellers use to punctuate their delivery and to order the material. I see this oral storytelling perspective as one interesting avenue into the text of the Book of Mormon. Would that someone like Seamus Heaney would come along and translate the Book of Mormon from its rather dated rendition of the King's English into modern verse!