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Brad Liening

Uncertainty Principle


This is the part of the night
when somebody suggests that
maybe death is a bunny that plucks
you from the garden of your life.
That somebody is probably drunk
but that doesn't mean he's wrong
necessarily, as even award-winning
geniuses get snookered now and then.
When the membrane is punctured
out spurts the cytoplasm.
When the tuning fork fights
with the metronome, the concerto
grows highly pressurized.
Everything ultimately returns
to its initial phase and for all
its odd angularity, disorder is
as easy as a heartbeat, maybe easier,
clarity provided as per defibrillators,
voltage pounded through the wrack.
Sometimes uncertainty is preferable
as when the possibilities of beauty
multiply in the darkened parlor.
When the lights come up is it
paper party hats and a cake or
a harp with all the strings ripped out?
Rustle of a little black dress or
snuffle of your drunk friend whose
three-legged dog just got smacked
by a pick-up truck? Poor bastard,
imagine him alone in a windswept
parking lot, clutching a photograph
snapped the last time he and Lucky
went to the park. Bent at the edges,
banged through a hole. And aren't
we all mostly water and electricity,
currents crackling through currents?
This might explain how the heart
can feel like a box kite, the brain
like boiled tungsten and wet mice.
Some retain their luster in even
the heaviest rain. It is possible to look
into a puddle and see only the sky.