White Whale Review: An Online Literary Magazine Untitled Document
Brad Liening
Brad Liening lives and works in Minneapolis and is the poetry editor at InDigest Magazine.

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Brad Liening



There comes a time and that time is now.

Pieces of brisket spill from the bucket,


the glowing gizmo giving life

or at least another year’s funding.


At the critical conversational juncture,

the tape runs out. Congress heaves a sigh.


Rats scramble to the back of the cage

but there’s nowhere to run,


all that squeaking useless, useless.

Scientists dose them then don ski masks


and peer in, record the reaction that gets.

In this case you might be a scientist


or a rat or the janitor who sees everything

and remembers, who waits for the right moment



Brad Liening

while dreaming of summers spent skinny-dipping

in the quarry, who kicks over the bucket of paint


on the way out the door. You might be

the Congressional aide in possession


of a terrible secret, unable to sleep,

weeping into your pomegranate juice.


Mr. Potato Head in pieces, will he ever be

reconstituted? The piebald chimp draws


a drawing of himself murdering everyone.

The retired all-star refuses to testify.






Copyright © Brad Liening. White Whale Review, issue 4.2

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