17 April 2010

not bad Buk


so I'm currently reading 'Love is a Dog From Hell' (1974-1977) and I love Bukowski because for him there is nothing too prosaic to put in a poem; 
human waste, mindless sex, being drunk, being used and using....but then, out of nowhere it paves the way for the little realisations that hit you so hard. 

He could be a real ass you know, especially towards women; but then he reveals the fleeting moments of longing and vulnerability before pulling you away into the next train-wreck encounter with another crazy woman and his droll and mostly drunk perspective of the world.


quiet clean girls in gingham dresses ...
all I've ever known are whores, ex-prostitutes,
madwomen. I see men with quiet,
gentle women ­ I see them in the supermarkets,
I see them walking down the streets together,
I see them in their apartments: people at
peace, living together. I know that their
peace is only partial, but there is
peace, often hours and days of peace.

all I've ever known are pill freaks, alcoholics,

whores, ex-prostitutes, madwomen.

when one leaves

another arrives
worse than her predecessor.

I see so many men with quiet clean girls in

gingham dresses
girls with faces that are not wolverine or
predatory.

"don't ever bring a whore around," I tell my

few friends, "I'll fall in love with her."

"you couldn't stand a good woman, Bukowski."


I need a good woman. I need a good woman

more than I need this typewriter, more than
I need my automobile, more than I need
Mozart; I need a good woman so badly that I
can taste her in the air, I can feel her
at my fingertips, I can see sidewalks built
for her feet to walk upon,
I can see pillows for her head,
I can feel my waiting laughter,
I can see her petting a cat,
I can see her sleeping,
I can see her slippers on the floor.

I know that she exists

but where is she upon this earth
as the whores keep finding me?


excerpt from 'an almost made up poem'

"I loved you
like a man loves a woman he never touches, only
writes to, keeps little photographs of. I would have
loved you more if I had sat in a small room rolling a
cigarette and listened to you piss in the bathroom,
but that didn’t happen. your letters got sadder.
your lovers betrayed you. kid, I wrote back, all
lovers betray. it didn’t help. you said
you had a crying bench and it was by a bridge and
the bridge was over a river and you sat on the crying
bench every night and wept for the lovers who had
hurt and forgotten you."





tonight

"your poems about the girls will still be around 
50 years from now when the girls are gone", 
my editor phones me. 

dear editor: 
the girls appear to be gone  
already. 

I know what you mean 

but give me one truly alive woman 
tonight 
walking across the floor toward me 

and you can have all the poems 

the good ones
the bad ones 
or any that I might write 
after this one.

I know what you mean.

do you know what I mean?


x

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