Pank Magazine seems to delight in thoughts born of the abstract. The unassuming cover art sets the tone and establishes the journal’s aesthetic. The brush-painted invitation/confession “to anyone I have ever met:” precedes poems and short fiction that meditate on the serendipity that can be found in the life of a contemplative, literary person.
In the poem “Another Uncertainty Principle,” Les Kay illustrates the common result of the left brain/right brain dilemma a literary person experiences in the course of their education. “I guess I couldn’t fathom the language / Newton fashioned to explain his world, / so I came back to my tongue: the tip / touches the teeth to make meaning.” When math turns from concrete numbers to imagined contrivances, language and literature are a ready refuge.
Luke Geddes makes an interesting choice, allowing his third person narrator to inhabit the titular character of his story, “Bongo the Space Ape.” Poor Bongo has had a long, storied career with his guardian, Jon, and is now making the rounds of science fiction conventions. What sustains Bongo? He and Jon “have each other.”
While deconstructing the fairy tale has become fashionable, it seems that Naoko Awa’s “The End of the Dream” (translated from the Japanese by Toshiya Kamei) manages to create a modern fable that stands up to the classics. There can certainly be danger and threat when a young woman uses products from “Dream Cosmetics.”
Chris Gavaler tells a story through a story through an English 10 assignment with “Name:___________.” Even if the reader has never taught a class in the humanities, he or she will appreciate the adolescent coyness and understanding displayed in the student’s writing.