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Marcus Slease

By September 25th, 2020No Comments

from The Autobiography of Don Whiskers


He was born under the sign of Aries with restless birth winds. The port o potties are tilted.  Nicole  rubs  his  hair.  There  is  some kind of celebration. Bricks in the oven, pulled out, put together with a tasty filling. Around & around  with  little boxes,  if you  smoke please try Carlton. She tries Carlton. He gets a  Mars  bar. They watch the balloons, not the little ones, the big ones. You stand in a basket, the hot flame shoots you into the sky. The rain patters into mud  muddles.  She  takes his hand, the blue colouring of the lolly drips down  his chin. Someone  is standing on  it, next to the meat truck, a  pound  note. Under  one  foot and  then another, he waits for it, the wind kicks it away. A hairy  stranger  blows smoke through the nose, a thick fingered stranger counts back the coins. Try not to draw too much attention, you don’t want  someone else to spot it. He makes  himself smaller and  smaller, in and  out of the crowds, he tries to catch it, the wind kicks it away. The balloons rainbow the sky.



There is someone in the bushes, hugging a bottle, their feet sticking out. They kick him in the ribs, roll him over,  kick  him  some more, the pleading, no drunks allowed, they chant, he pleads, but they keep kicking. He retires to the fields, and a little  further, the hole. He peers into it. His secret stash,  a  red journal, the ink soggy. Scrubbing under the skin, it is hard to scrape it. He can never feel clean. Beneath the ink, more ink, smudged forever. The nebulous human of the fields.



In Milton Keynes, during the conversion, they watch E.T. with the branch, the branch is a small gathering, if it is  a  larger gathering it is called a ward, they don’t have a ward, they have a branch, it is a bootleg copy and the sound is not fully synced. In the movie they are eating something called Pizza Hut. It is not liver and onions and potatoes, it is not pork chops and  potatoes, it is not the fatted lamb with mint sauce and potatoes, it is not a    shepherds    pie    with    mashed    potatoes,    it    is    not    eels    with potatoes, it is not bubble and squeak with potatoes and left over vegetables, it is not at 7-Eleven. What is it.



The water is cold, his  new  father  holds  up  his  hand  in a  square, it looks like  a  slap,  his  foot  keeps  coming  out  of  the  water. After the bomb they made him write  eight,  over  and  over,  he  drew two circles joined together, you start sinning at 8, sinning is infinity, the  spirit  is  supposed  to  stay  white,  go  inside  &  give it a scrub. Don Whiskers was always dirty, 8 is the beginning of wisdom. The new father gets a new job in the  new  church,  it is  called a calling. His calling is to convert more converts. The new father brings new people  to  the  house  for  conversion,  it is  the new hope, everyone lives in government housing, with the dole. Pre-knotted    brown    ties    and    almost    starched    shirts,    the    rush forward,    for    something    better,    here    now,    and    also,    more importantly, later, in the heavens.





Born in Portadown, Northern Ireland, Marcus Slease has made his home in Turkey, Poland, Italy, South Korea, the United States, Spain, and the United Kingdom – experiences that inform his nomadic surrealist writing. His poetry has been translated into Danish and Polish, featured in the Best British Poetry series, and has appeared in Tin House, Fence, and Poetry Magazine, among others. Currently, he lives in Castelldefels, Spain and teaches high school literature in Barcelona. He is working on a trilogy of nomadic surrealist novels. His latest book is The Green Monk (Boiler House Press).