parallax background

5 poems by Marion Deal

Poem as place to speak to my father 25 years ago by M. Wright
August 19, 2019
ALBUM REVIEW: Immunity by Clairo
August 21, 2019



Police Report

The ancients dropped by my room
the other night
dressed up nice in three-piece suits they said
weren’t for me but instead for a
later engagement
so they gotta be fast
Their fingers worried through the veins
of their beards vainly combing
what mewling revelry roosted there

“To master Way is to become Way,
to master gain is to become gain,
to master loss is to become loss”

I caught their words in a mason jar
to use on my toast the next morning

(Typically I tend to peanut butter
but I thought these might lend a subtler flavor
not that you care personally but
you never know what details are important)

They thanked me for my time
and then were off through the snow
I read in their footprints a
kind of coda:

“To master sought is to become sought”


Lighting Fireworks

You get a new chance at freedom each time the women

You gotta be a virgin if you
want to understand
this kind of ritual
(thankfully such things can be
cleanly bought if you’re
holding the heart of Mao to prompt a
Don’t fuck it up, though,
because the trademark of the moon
is that it’s not forever
and even though it wants you
to be born anew it
has to keep up its branding

A consistent image may well
improve one’s chances of getting laid –
if one is into that sort of thing

There are many sorts of things
one has to be into if one is
to get a shot at rebirth

Here is a short (by no means
comprehensive) list:
Contests of strength
Sexual attraction
Practical festivities highlighting the generational divide between urban and rural participants in a cultural frameshift
Fried bread on a stick
QR codes
Guinea pigs in cages
Small rivers of dumplings campaigning to take the place of flowing bodies in the Underworld
Plastic Gatling guns
Smoking sausage

Fly, fucker, fly.





Visit to a Western Supermarket
(after five months in rural China)

All this is good
said the Lord
now let you multiply and compete
into a cascade of obsolescences
by this you know that I am your Father
for I am pleased in the regard
of brightly trussed silences
promised to the people for a song of liberation

a product ignorant
the way of ritual is another kind of reproduction
pattern yourself in the shining veins
of lesser deities to promise insignificant
domains to your buyers over
the thr(u/a/e)shing of calculation
caught in the fields
after a hard day’s

never have I seen a family so tipsy
over a lack of necessity for reunion
all I want is a little choice
I’m sure you’d be all too happy to oblige

another model is Lamarckian dour in the expectation
of being used for tombs like these
I know I knew the startled
churring of a tuneful drill
to pass the enticement of genes

Hey I know I’m your Creator
but how’d you feel ‘bout
coming home with me tonight –
I’ll let you pick the brand of
lasagna I use for dinner
cause I’ll take all their
in the
even I will cook it myself
holding throated forges




















Marion Deal
chases emergent things to monasteries and universities and Jim Morrison’s grave. A chapbook of hers, Cool Talks, Dead I Guess, is forthcoming from Bone and Ink Press. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in literary journals such as The Rumpus, The Seventh Quarry (UK), Chaleur Magazine, Yes Poetry, and Apricity Press, among others, and have been nationally recognized by the Alliance for Young Artists and Writers and the National YoungArts Foundation. She has performed her work in French, Italian, and English at venues from a Shandong Province mountain range to the Baryshnikov Arts Center