After a year or so of seeing Pulp Modern barely make a dime, I've decided to simplify things and do what everybody else does--I am changing the compensation to one (1) contributor copy. The payment system I had set up didn't work (mostly because there were hardly any profits to share).
ALSO -- PM no longer accepts simultaneous submissions. Now that PM is a bi-annual publication, it takes me a while to get to every submission.
I’ve never killed
anyone.I’m pretty sure of it.But I’ve done things I wasn’t supposed to
do.Hell, when I was younger, I broke
quite a few laws and was lucky to have never been caught.Most of those laws were/are moronic and
shouldn’t exist in the first place.I
never felt guilty disrespecting legislation enacted by and for business
interests.Really couldn’t give a shit.
When I was a kid, now, I
understood guilt.My parents were good
at just sort of putting their laws out there and allowing me to either obey
them or suffer the consequences.Any
time I broke a rule, the guilt I felt, I’m sure, had to do with the fact that I
knew I was going to get my ass kicked the moment my parents found out (which
they almost always did.They’re smart
folks, what can I say?).
In my days of breaking local
and national Uncle Sam’s laws, I ran with a lot of criminals who had very good
reasons to feel guilty (most of them are dead now—I wonder if their guilt,
however, lives as a form of energy, just hanging out in the atmosphere
somewhere, maybe pestering innocent birds or something; but I digress.It’s a habit).I once hung out with a Korean gangster who
had just come back from head-butting a man who owed him money.He had a horrific gash in his forehead that
had opened so far I could see his skull.I asked him why he didn’t just threaten the man with a gun, maybe even
shoot him in the foot or something.He
said that would have made him feel bad.
Hmm.I guess guilt arrives in different forms for
I’m really digressing
here.Let me get to the point (or at
least try to)—
I was asked to write about
one of the poems on the 5-2 website.I
read through a heap of them before coming across Amy Pollard’s “Aftershock.”I guess what struck me about her poem was how
she just shrugged off any psycho-babble Dr. Phil bullshit pretense and just
gave us the explicit thoughts of a man who has just done something terrible to
another human being.Maybe it’s
murder.I like to think it doesn’t
matter.His reaction makes the
poem.There’s no way it could be me, he
says.It’s all chance.And maybe it is.The thought Amy’s poem ultimately left me
with was this:
Once the deed is done, in the
face of the tragedy left behind, is guilt even relevant?
To read Amy's wonderful poem, please head over here.
Alec Cizak is a writer and filmmaker. His work has appeared in several journals and anthologies. His most recent novel, Breaking Glass, is available from ABC Group Documentation. He is the editor of the fiction journal, Pulp Modern.
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