A Universal History of Deception

A Universal History of Deception

(Originality of said title owned by Mr. Jorge Luis B., but alas he is muy muertos)

No please sir not again.

Well, alright, shit man

have another ganders:

Not the mirrors of the world

reflection false,

great and grandest



abre los ojos


No synonym for horror

develops this negative, instead

I will choose:

el miedo—will have to do

Obliging my carbon matter


to fill


perfectly empty








looking glass’s

meticulously bold


impuro—feo y el mal      is no color for a plate.

I’d rather bump coke of it’s











[Lazarus beats outIt’s getting better all the time!”]



  1. mmcnellis

    I like the line breaks in this poem. They create a nice tension and emphasis.

    • thank you for reading. this poem really is about filling empty space and as i am no poet, i was largely interested in using space to do my work.

      • mmcnellis

        People aren’t poets…until they are. Aside from the poems I was made to write in elementary school, I had no interest in writing poetry until I joined a poetry group (joined them to meet some local people) and fell in love with writing it. Our group leader always emphasizes the importance of not downplaying our work, hint hint. :)

  2. nme16

    Beautiful use of language and imagery here. Wonderful

  3. It is beautiful and very mysterious. As are many reflections… which is what I took most from the poem. This is probably because the allusion to Borges and his motif of “the looking glass.”

    “No synonym for horror/ develops this negative” is evocative (even though I usually hate using this word…), encompasses the tone of the poem clearly, and is so new and unlike anything I’ve heard before that I believe it can stand on its own. There is legitimate truth behind it and it provokes a process in me when I read it: horror, nothing less, splotchy reflection of myself coming into focus, not me, but is me (as did the whole mid-section of the poem, following this couplet). I don’t know if that is what you were going for, but that is what I see. Which is why I think beginning the poem and ending the poem the way you did was genius- as the only time I’ve felt that horror at not recognizing myself has been in between two moments like that. The beginning, even the reader falls into it- they have no choice yet they succumb. The ending brings the jokester, “the great and grandest/ Of Deception,” back and brushes off the introspection as quickly as the two lines of poetry used- just another image to be forgotten, more empty space.

    Again, I don’t know if you were aiming at this, but you should know how holistic and complete this piece is, but with a great message (I mean great as in grand, not “great, cool”).

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