Deborah Diemont

The Great Galaxy & Girl Attacked by a Strange Bird

Deborah Diemont

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The Great Galaxy

Rufino Tamayo, 1978


Before the sky,

A cut-out yawns;

The humerus,

Scapula, radius

Ulna, and twenty-

Seven hand bones

Highly simplify


Greetings to dawn.

A microphone-rose.

A skull- or fist-face;

Shape-shifts we owe

to Grandma’s radio,

Her Japanese dolls,

And parakeet cage

Cannot scare us.


The styling-brush mic,

Gripped tight. Lean legs

Jumped and pummeled

the bed. Chalk writ-

Ten triangles and blips

Glittered strips of blue.

Fuchsia-dribbled flower:

A satellite? A tower?

Did the great galaxy

Appear too small to you?



Girl Attacked by a Strange Bird

Rufino Tamayo, 1947


A girl’s being attacked by a strange bird.

Is she pretty?

I don’t know. I’d say she looks abstract.

What’s she wearing?

Two triangles, a cape and a puffy sleeve.

What can you see?


She’s tilting like a top in her one shoe.

Her right leg doubles back. One arm’s a wing.

She’s shadowboxing round the prickly pear.

The bird looks real or else like a cartoon.

More real than the girl. More powerful.

Silly, with its wide-wide open beak.

As if it’s going to sing.

Or speak.




Deborah Diemont


Deborah Diemont lives in Syracuse, New York and spends summers in Chiapas, Mexico where she co-teaches a study-abroad course on ecosystem restoration. She has two books of poetry with Dos Madres Press: Wanderer and Diverting Angels. Her poetry has appeared in a variety of print and online journals, including The Raintown Review, The Nervous Breakdown, and New Walk.