Scoundrel Time

Burger Revolution

Since its grand opening in Nepal, everyone has been raving about McRonald’s. You see, we’re such a poor country even McDonald’s hasn’t sniffed us out. Thirty-eight thousand locations in over hundred countries...

Revolutionary Letter to Diane di Prima

“not killing all the white men, but killing the white man in each of us. . . .” —D. d. P., “Revolutionary Letter #32”   Even now there is the desire, but what to do after Jan. 6— the militias and the...

Dear Miss Metropolitan: An Interview with Carolyn Ferrell

In 1996, a teenage Black girl disappears from the streets of Queens. Then another. Then a third girl, of Puerto Rican descent, steps into the street and isn’t seen again. The disappearance of these three girls...

Just Her Luck

If Holly put a penny in a gum ball machine, gum and a gold plastic ring would come out. At the Holy Names carnival, she’d lay a poker chip on a number, watch the wheel spin, and collect a stuffed animal.“I...

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Thank you for helping to keep the scoundrels at bay. We are a volunteer-run publication, and your generous support keeps us going. Scoundrel Time is a 501(c)(3) organization, and your donation is tax-deductible.

News & Announcements

We are excited to announce the Scoundrel Time Pushcart Prize nominees for 2022:

Works nominated by Scoundrel Time’s editors:
“Bright” by Marilyn Abildskov
“Voyeurs” by Munawar Abbas
Jennifer Moxley: “One of Everything”
“Bounded Functions” by Donald Quist

Works nominated by Pushcart Prize contributing editors:
“Algorithims” by Cindy Bosley
“Kill All the Bats” by Mohammed Sheeraz Dasti
“Just her Luck” by Laura Jamison


Ken Massey’s essay, “Behind the Red Railing: My Childhood Isolation,” has been selected as a Notable essay in the new edition of Best American Essays, edited by Kathryn Schulz.

2021 Awards

We’re excited to announce our 4th annual Editors’ Choice Awards, just in time for our 4th anniversary. Each year, the editors of Scoundrel Time choose a favorite work that we published in the past year in each of three genres, poetry, fiction, and essay. This year, each winner receives $125.

This year’s winners are:

Michelle Acker’s “Aesopica (2019)” (poetry)
Ken Massey’s “Behind the Red Railing: My Childhood Isolation” (essay)
Chika Onyenezi’s “Twenty Thousand Cedis” (fiction)


Scoundrel Time journal congratulates the following winners of our special award for pandemic art, Art Against Isolation. These 7 powerful works appeared in our series, “Scenes from the Pandemic.” Each winning artist receives $100.


Virginia Beards, “April 7, 2020” (poem)

Lori Barrett, “The View From Inside” (essay)

Robbie Gamble, “Barriers” (essay)

Nene Humphrey, “Pandemic Sound Scrolls” (visual art)

Timothy Liu, “Four Poems” (poems)

Azarin Sadegh, “The Lizard” (fiction)

Eleanor Windman, “Coping on the Upper West Side” (fiction)




“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

Corona Corona

1. Traffic cones pop-up like moving goalposts, out of nowhere, sidewalk, stoop, parking ramp and it wasn’t the utility van or work crews who fenced in projects mid-way. They’re furloughed. This is more a gaslighty, elf-on-the-shelf kind of mind...

The Axe

My neighbor leaves his axe out in the rain. We are not neighbors, I don’t know His name; for two years we have waved And said something mundane about the weather As we passed. He’s skinny and gray and looks Like a salted redneck; he drives his golf...

Eisenhower Box

I have two kinds of problems: urgent and important. Around the block picking up a few knacks, still, way earlier than Sissypuss, loser, to City on Hill. Shot shit, talked old tie threads, strategically inveighed. Wide-berthed chronic whiners who’d...

Two Poems by Omar Martínez-Sandoval

It’s Too Hot in Mississippi   Honk and honk of the four wheels, the cry of the goose, this machine doesn’t care about the cyclist. They own the roads, don’t you dare ride in front of them. Stubborn. Why should you leave the road? Whatever. It’s...

Three Poems by Jill McDonough

Above Boston   From the air you could see everything—my neighborhood, probably my house. The T, the flat expanse of Stop and Shop, the new condos in what was the Catholic Church. MIT’s round dome; long shadows on the beaches of Revere. The...

Black-Crowned Night-Heron

The girl is alive—someone caught her on video. The girl is alive, alive alive, the women who fed her one night cackled at that glimpse of her face in the freezing forest and I heard them toast her wild will. How we accepted such things when we were...

American Healthcare Erasure

persons with disabilities                                 in large part                                                               unable to cover the full cost of long- term                  troubles remain exhausted long-term Health care in...

It Isn’t Our Fault

Across the highway from the tank farm, where tanks hold Bakken Crude and Tar Sands oil that, when the Big One, I mean the Cascadia-Subduction Zone earthquake, slams the Pacific Northwest, will because they are situated on backfill, explode and send...

Song in Flood Time

We play records. The rains know not how to slow. Hear a catch in the chords. Kneel, and lift one breath to the next. Bounty of chocolate squares arrayed on the table between us. Cards we tally, past midnight as the reservoirs strain and fail...


Invincible system. Riveting mass and iron forged to chute prime smokeless West Virginia coal down the mountain to the rails on the river gorge, locomote it straight to market. Henry Ford bought it, bettered it. Sold it when regulations hamstrung...

Ode to Small Towns

Though none of you share my political convictions I will allow you a small amount of joy. My window is lit in solidarity with any other window that chooses to be awake this midnight. There is no other lit window that I can tell but then my vision...

Storm of a lifetime II

My husband is at MacDougall, it’s definitely not safer for him When my husband was in Pelican Bay and they had a tsunami warning he said they locked them in their cells They did that at USP Beaumont in TX last year during #hurricanharvey   My...


on October 13, 2017 Let the fat-assed harvest moon Shake herself off the horizon To crush you. Let the Pacific breach the coast, The plains, the Mississippi’s dagger, And drag you back to the Marianas Trench. Let every ghost, frantic, sullen or...

Two Poems By Patron Henekou in English and French

Dalva « Je l’ai aperçue, celle qu’on surnommait dans la cité « la créature » ou « Vivenda Ercilia, la diablesse », c’est selon, au moment où elle sortait de l’eau. Nue, de la tête aux pieds, insouciante de tout danger. » Les enfants du Brésil...

Excerpt from Crowded

Good-bye, Big Dipper; good-bye, Pleiades; goodbye, Orion, good-bye. Underneath this dome leeching its incandescence into the sky, the “what’s that? what’s that? what’s that, what’s that?” of the modern trade in attention disorder, our faces booked...