Scoundrel Time

The Pittsburgh Massacre and its Aftermath: A Witness to the Witnesses

Whenever I’m struggling to enter deeply into the mind of a fictional character, I’ll ask myself:  What is it that this character doesn’t want to know about him or herself? What feeling is she keeping at a...

Three Poems by Jennifer Moxley

One of Everything If Po’ Lightnin’ still be Muse of mine, may he strum a few Orphic chords for my brother Robert, who is soon to be skipping town to avoid his creditors. The Sonoma sunlight, plumper of jammy...

An Interview with Ethel Rohan

Ethel Rohan’s newest story collection, In the Event of Contact, is an examination of trauma and its aftermath, of loneliness and a failure to connect. Rohan is an Irish writer living in San Francisco. She is...

from Ceive.

Ceive is a novel in verse that retells the Noah’s Ark story on a container ship. Set in an imagined near-future when extreme weather and gun violence have brought on a collapse of civilization, the book...

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News & Announcements

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)

 

Scoundrel Time is thrilled to announce our nominees for the 2021 Pushcart Prize:

Poetry:
Shane McCrae’s “Some Heavens are All Silence

Michelle Acker’s “Aesopica (2019)”

Fiction:
The Day Bahlul Died by Evan J. Massey

Coping on the Upper West Side by Eleanor Windman

Essay:
“Behind the Red Railing: My Childhood Isolation” by Ken Massey

Roxana Robinson’s “Trump and the Criminal Culture”

 

And, we are proud to announce that these works published in Scoundrel Time have been nominated by Pushcart contributing editors:

Fiction:
A Standing Offer by Robert Herbst

Twenty Thousand Cedis by Chika Onyenezi

Strange Times by Faith Okifo

Dream Girl by Megan Howell

 

Essay:
“The Route to Solitude: On Facing the Coronavirus in South Korea” by Josalyn Knapic

 

 

Here are the winners of Scoundrel Time’s third annual Editors’ Choice Awards. The prizes are awarded every January for work published in the previous year:

Fiction: “Chiarascuro” by Jordan Dotson
Poetry: “The Kabul Olympics” by John McAuliffe
Creative Nonfiction: “Outside King Soopers” by Elizabeth Robinson

 

We are honored to announce that Scoundrel Time has been awarded a 2019 grant from the Council of Literary Magazines and Small Presses (CLMP). CLMP awarded 15 grants to support literary journals through its newly established Literary Magazine Fund. The Literary Magazine Fund was created with an award to CLMP from the Amazon Literary Partnership (ALP). CLMP Executive Director Mary Gannon says, “Often the first places writers find their readers, these publications are essential to the publishing ecosystem, providing fertile ground for diverse voices to thrive.”

 

Fiction Editor Karen Bender was a keynote speaker at UCD Clinton Institute conference in Dublin in December 2019, Alternative Realities: New Challenges for American Literature in the Age of Trump. Bender was in conversation with Aleksander Hemon and Chris Beckett on “What to Read (and Write) in the Age of Trump.” Her talk featured several works that first appeared in Scoundrel Time. http://ucdclinton.ie/1531-2/

 

We are excited to announce Scoundrel Time’s 2019 Pushcart Prize nominees:

Fiction:
“Chiaraschuro” by Jordan Dotson
“A Dinner” by Meiko Ko

Poetry:
[I wish I still smoked so that I could sit outside in the dark] by Diane Seuss
“Rest Stop Ghazal” by Dane Slutzky

Essay:
“Where Is La Brecha Treinta? Racing Against Death in the South Texas Borderlands” by Caroline Tracey
“Scrap and Pig: A Foundry Hand’s Education in Heat and Light” by David L. Engelhardt

 

We are excited to announce the works published in Scoundrel Time that have been nominated by Pushcart contributing editors:

Fiction:
Bananas for Sale” by Olga Zilberbourg
A Man at the End of the Hallway” by Ksenia Lakovic and

Poetry:
Corona and Confession” by Ellen McGrath Smith.

 

Here are the winners of Scoundrel Time’s second annual Editors’ Choice Awards, selected from among the outstanding works we published in 2018:

Fiction: “Allegiance” by Lorraine Rice
Poetry: “Hold” by Sally Ball
Creative Nonfiction: “Born & Raised: Learning to Leave Steel Country” by David L. Engelhardt

 

We are excited to announce Scoundrel Time’s 2018 Pushcart Prize nominees:

Fiction
“Allegiance” by Lorraine Rice
“A Cloud Like a Person Standing Upside Down” by Qian Zhang

Poetry
“The Truly Screaming Baby” by Heather McHugh
“Protege” by Cynthia Dewi Oka
“Prayer” by James Hoch

Essay
“There Were Six of Us” by Sara Frankel

 

Scoundrel Time fiction editor Karen Bender’s new story collection, THE NEW ORDER is now out from Counterpoint Press. See this terrific interview in the Los Angeles Review of Books.

Mariya Taher has received the Muslim American Leadership Alliance’s (MALA) first annual Human Rights Storytellers Award in recognition of her outstanding contribution to defending human rights through storytelling. Taher’s essay, “A Prescriptive Identity? Not My Birthright,” appears in Scoundrel Time.

Robert Anthony Siegel’s new memoir, Criminals: My Family’s Life on Both Sides of the Law, is now out from Counterpoint Press. Booklist calls it “an engrossing, highly readable memoir.” Siegel is a Contributing Editor for Scoundrel Time.

Alissa Quart’s new book Squeezed: Why Our Families Can’t Afford America, about the struggling middle class, is out now. In a starred review, Kirkus calls it “thoughtful and compassionate.” Quart has written poems for Scoundrel Time, including “Thoughts & Prayers” and “Comey: Cut-Up.”

Reginald Dwayne Betts has been named a 2018 Guggenheim Fellow in Poetry. His poems, “Secrets,” “Mural for the Heart,” and “For a Bail Denied,” appeared recently in Scoundrel Time and will be included in his collection Felon: A Misspelling of My Name, forthcoming from Norton.

Joan Silber’s novel, Improvement, has won the Pen/Faulkner Award in Fiction and the NBCC Award in Fiction. Her story “Unspeakable” appears in our How It Ends series.

Joshua Weiner’s Trumpoems, two of which appear in Scoundrel Time, are now collected in a free virtual chapbook at the Dispatches site: Everything I Do I Do Good – TrumPoems, by Joshua Weiner

Winners, Scoundrel Time’s first annual Editors’ Choice Awards, selected from among the outstanding works we published in 2017:

Fiction: Maria Saba, “My First Friend”
Poetry: Elly Bookman, “Plasticity”
Creative Nonfiction: Regan Good, “The Double Punch: Trumpian Violence vs NYPD Patriarchy”

Our poetry editor, Daisy Fried, was interviewed by 24 Pearl Street. She says nice things about us.

We’re thrilled and grateful to Entropy Magazine for selecting Peter Trachtenberg’s essay, “I Lift My Lamp,” for their terrific “Best of 2017” list.

Contributor Hillary Jordan’s novel Mudbound has been made into a film that premiered at Sundance and is now available on Netflix. The film has been nominated for 4 Academy awards in 2018, including best adapted screenplay. Jordan’s ekphrastic poem, “Flamboyan,” and “The Donald’s Going,” her satirical tribute to Yeats, appear in Scoundrel Time.

We are excited to announce Scoundrel Time’s first-ever Pushcart Prize nominees. The following works and authors are nominated by our editors:

Fiction:
Maria Saba, “My First Friend”
Matthew Olzmann, “The Blanket Room”

Poetry:
Gabrielle Brant Freeman, “Girltrap”
Amanda Newell, “thousands of spirit limbs [were] haunting as many good soldiers, every now and then tormenting them”

Essay/Dispatch:
Timothy Denevi, “The Future Is a Ceiling of Impossible Water”
Raqi Syed, “My Mother’s Pilgrimage”

In addition, we’re excited to share that the following works appearing in our journal have been nominated by Pushcart Prize contributing editors:

Essay/Dispatch:
Peter Trachtenberg, “I Lift My Lamp”
Dana Sachs, Factory Men: Migrants in Patras, Greece

Fiction:
Carolyn Ferrell, “How the World Really Feels About You”
Tracy O’Neill, “Shuffle Off”
Karen Brennan, “Requiem”
Karen E Bender, “Describe Hope: Assignment Given to Undergraduate Creative Writing Class on November 9, 2016”
David Ulin, “Any Humans Here?”

 

Rachel Ann Brickner’s dispatch, “Another Year Older and Deeper in Debt,” will be reprinted in a new edition of the anthology, Without a Net: The Female Experience of Growing Up Working Class, forthcoming from Seal Press.

Elizabeth Rosner has a new book out: Survivor Cafe: The Legacy of Trauma and the Labyrinth of Memory. Her essay, “Before and After,” appeared in Scoundrel Time in July.

Scoundrel Time editor is interviewed for Bethesda Magazine: Searching for Truth: Bethesda writer Paula Whyman heads a new journal intertwining art and politics” by Janelle Harris, Sept/Oct 2017

Scoundrel Time is featured in “Writers, Editors Resist,” by Sarah Seltzer in Poets & Writers Magazine, May/June 2017

 

Contributors

“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

A Heartbreaking Lesson of Politics

I first parted ways with my parents politically during a presidential primary race. I was eight. The Republican candidate was Richard Milhous Nixon. My parents were staunch, active, pragmatic Democrats, and they were backing Lyndon Johnson in the...

The Day Bahlul Died

Our convoy got back to COP Bowri Tana around 6 pm. The sun was falling and seemed to light the horizon on fire. As we marched from the flight line, I spotted six local nationals, Afghans, praying under the canopy next to the TOC. They were kneeling...

Family Trees

Bubba (center) surrounded by her children and extended family (c. 1904-5)   I am moved when people invoke their ancestors as fonts of wisdom and strength. I know so little about mine. My ancestral line comes to a halt three generations back in...

COFFEE AND CATASTROPHE

“I’m the last thing standing between you and the apocalypse.” – Hillary Clinton   One of those mornings, portentous, dread-full. A sickly sky, as happens in September in LA, when the wind singes, and the light is yellow-weird more...

Three Poems by Kevin McIlvoy

Checklist sharpied on the inside lid of a hatbox   This crèche will make nothing happen when you take the fourteen parts from the hatbox and unwrap the news of ‘42 covering 1) the manger made of tongue depressors given to Grandmother as a small...

Twenty Thousand Cedis

The day the wind came down and brought rain, we were hanging on a guava tree along the hospital road. Our backpacks were filled with fruits. The wind was strong and pushed a cow herd our way. In the distance, the hot steam mixed with dust, and the...

Two Poems by Martha Silano

Why Are You Always So Angry? Because your soul turned out to be soil. Because your wonderful is a wind drill. Because you surprised me with sulfide. Because you hiss like melting steel. Because instead of a case of tuna, you brought home a case of...

Petition

Offence’s gilded hand may shove by justice, And oft ’tis seen the wicked prize itself Buys out the law; but ’tis not so above. There is no shuffling; there the action lies In his true nature . . . . Hamlet 3.3.58-62 Perfect...

Landscaping

My brother digs holes in the ground all day long every day he would rather dig a hole or four hundred than go home to the family at dinnertime sit around the table gutting chicken picatta in silence. He would rather drive the landscape truck up and...

Paper People

No child wanted to be sent to The Shredder. It hid in a concrete, windowless structure several blocks from the car towing company, the chicken factory farms, and the E-waste recycling centers. That was where the unwanted kids went: the kids who...

Two Poems By Cynthia Dewi Oka

You Don’t Have to Be Tough All by Yourself, You Said and if I returned the favor, it was much later. Or I lied. At the airport, waiting for my turn to sleep. Like a leg bone inside a grasshopper. In the selfie I sent, darkness curtains one side of...

A Man at the End of the Hallway

Early in the morning the hallways of the Cancer Institute were so empty and quiet, they seemed nowhere near the crowded city of Belgrade, but in another world. While Slavka cleaned the gray linoleum floor, she felt she was navigating a giant...

Prelude: Howling from the Suburbs 2001-2008

  I I saw the best minds of my gender destroyed by material madness, gorging hysterical spandex, hauling their Hummers, dragging children up and down Wisteria Lanes, seeking 100% money-back guaranteed certainty, happiness, Who sliced and served...