Scoundrel Time

Fighting for Racial Justice

Monday, June 19th marked the 152nd anniversary of Juneteenth: the day—more than two years after the Emancipation Proclamation—when slavery in the United States finally came to an end. But a century and a half...

If You See Something, Say Something (a trademark of the U. S. Department of Homeland Security)

Across the nation, we’re all part of communities. In cities, on farms, and in the suburbs. We share everyday moments— the face that sneers even when it’s saying ‘fantastic,’ the crowds whose joy...

Please State the Nature of Your Emergency: Scoundrel Time Portfolio Interview with Aaron Anstett

Here are some poem titles from Aaron Anstett’s fourth book, Insofar as Heretofore: “Self-Portrait as Jackass on Dash Cam,” “Please List All Previous Addresses,” “If the TV Will Not Be Used at All During the...

Another Year Older and Deeper in Debt

  Say I tell you a story about a girl who’s afraid of money. From a young age, she learned that there didn’t seem to be much of it and that hard work didn’t mean one would ever have much of it. She knew...

“In the increasingly convincing darkness / The words become palpable…" —John Ashbery

“Let us go forth with fear and courage and rage to save the world.” —Grace Paley

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Comey: Cut-up

And then the nature of the person To lift the cloud Criminal in nature Turning Grandfather clock A whole lot of personal pain Lifting the cloud Being somebody who loves this country These were lies The nature of its work As a cloud Grandfather clock...

London’s Calling

Preparing a lamb curry wrap, Borough Market, May 5   I walked around the Borough Market exactly a month ago, reveling in how the South Bank has become a favorite part of the city. The market is a great place to grab a bite to eat or just watch...

The Beginnings of Sorrows

In my country, number one for billionaires, prisoners, franchises offer menu consistency. What lies dormant today in the collective unconscious? Akin to tintype, sun prints itself on structures and skin. As we age our vocabularies expand with names...

The Well

Of the two men at the well, one is the bucket the other is lowering, hand over hand, into the well, a rope strung around the bucket man’s shoulders, beneath his arms, between his genitals and thighs. The weight of the bucket man is making the rope...

James Franco Private Event

It is snowing outside in the woods of New Hampshire, each flake unique and crafted by James Franco. The radish in my wax paper bag of carrots and celery—it is the face of James Franco shaking up my lunch. James Franco has designed a line of...

Next Election

Maybe inject chlorophyll beneath skin to grow own food as we go. Maybe clutch in each palm handfuls of fat as hedge against vanishing animals. Maybe class up cursing with smattering of Latin. Maybe drive to supermarket stunned by afternoon sun faint...

Against All Evidence

Because we cannot believe in God the Monster entirely but believe in God the Monster a little, we’ll never be elected. We own these souls. Won’t someone fix them, uncover and preserve forever patches of sidewalk sun to sit in? In this game we walk...

Things We Say

After latest tragedy, let’s drift asleep listing words for what fish oblivious in waters do: plunge, glide, dive, sway. Our daily allowance of banalities includes again that strange phrase, “realistic fiction.” Among many nevers: Billionaire or...

Final Animal

Translucent amphibian or molecular invertebrate, scavenging rodent or stubborn ungulate, whatever it is endures all manner of onslaught for that imaginable unimaginable forthcoming moment it’s the last thing blinking and breathing in landscape...

My First Friend

Drowned. That’s how I liked to think of my parents. Ironic, as they were competitive swimmers. But this was how I imagined it. I am four years old. We are vacationing by the Caspian Sea. My grandparents are relaxing in their reclining chairs, their...

Neo(Trump)ologisms for 2017

  1)    Trumpe l’oeil: When you can’t believe the shit you’re seeing. 2)   Trumple: To stamp all over with the jackboots of ignorance; e.g., “The reporter was thrown to the ground and trumpled.” 3)   Trumpolining. When you bounce from one...

Capitol Comedy Hour with Kev & Paul

  Inside the Capitol building, underneath a statue of Barry Goldwater, a cluster of Republican members of Congress are gathered around a keg and holding red Solo cups. Among them are House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, Speaker Paul Ryan, and...

How to Build a Monument

Carving out the walls of Zion A desert river called The Virgin Urged us to sit that night. You know. The night my head caught fire And the stars kept falling And the splash of moon on the water made it certain That earth and sky go on and on and on...

It Will Rain

At the salty rim we long for raindrops, umbrella-shaped dancing on a picnic plate, settling down the dust in their hurry to spill old water into rusty tanks, surprising clover from ceded ground. The same precious well will mount on the same well...

Wing Banger

I have heard a cicada crawled out of the dark silences of the mountain after years eating its heart out, to join its luck its wet green wings clicking to the mountain choir dewdrop blackbird twig-snap stone-throw and the wind playing on things...

Greeting

New white folks
in the neighborhood
don’t know to greet
a stranger on the street.
They don’t mean
to be rude.
How long will it last, then –
How ya doing?
Eye to open eye.

Pox Americana: A Roll Call: 5/4/17

(@ the 217 Congressional Representatives who voted to “repeal & replace” the ACA, each one up for reelection in 18 months) You will someday sicken and someday, sure as taxes, vote no more. You will someday sicken and someday, sure as taxes, vote...