Sunday, August 16, 2009

we found the tunnel at the end of the light

Bukowski's birthday today.. Some of my fave cites from his optimistic realism.
"he's not alone tonight 
and neither am

OH YES by Charles Bukowski
there are worse things than
being alone
but it often takes decades
to realize this
and most often
when you do
it's too late
and there's nothing worse
too late.

YES YES by Charles Bukowski
when God created love he didn't help most
when God created dogs He didn't help dogs
when God created plants that was average
when God created hate we had a standard utility
when God created me He created me
when God created the monkey He was asleep
when He created the giraffe He was drunk
when He created narcotics He was high
and when He created suicide He was low

when He created you lying in bed
He knew what He was doing
He was drunk and He was high
and He created the mountains and the sea and fire at the same time

He made some mistakes
but when He created you lying in bed
He came all over His Blessed Universe.


he used to sell papers in front:
"Get your winners! Get rich on a dime!"
and about the 3rd or 4th race
you'd see him rolling in on his rotten board
with roller skates underneath.
he'd propel himself along on his hands;
he just had small stumps for legs
and the rims of the skate wheels were worn off.
you could see inside the wheels and they would wobble
something awful
shooting and flashing
imperialistic sparks!
he moved faster than anybody, rolled cigarette dangling,
you could hear him coming
"god o mighty, what was that?" the new ones asked.

he was the world's greatest loser
but he never gave up
wheeling toward the 2 dollar window screaming:
up on the board the 4 would be reading
60 to one.
I never heard him pick a winner.

they say he slept in the bushes. I guess that's where he
died. he's not around any

there was the big fat blonde whore
who kept touching him for luck, and

nobody had any luck. the whore is gone

I guess nothing ever works for us. we're fools, of course---

bucking the inside plus a 15 percent take,
but how are you going to tell a dreamer
there's a 15 percent take on the
dream? he'll just laugh and say,
is that all?

I miss those

IF WE TAKE by Charles Bukowski

if we take what we can see---
the engines driving us mad,
lovers finally hating;
this fish in the market
staring upward into our minds;
flowers rotting, flies web-caught;
riots, roars of caged lions,
clowns in love with dollar bills,
nations moving people like pawns;
daylight thieves with beautiful
nighttime wives and wines;
the crowded jails,
the commonplace unemployed,
dying grass, 2-bit fires;
men old enough to love the grave.

These things, and others, in content
show life swinging on a rotten axis.

But they've left us a bit of music
and a spiked show in the corner,
a jigger of scotch, a blue necktie,
a small volume of poems by Rimbaud,
a horse running as if the devil were
twisting his tail
over bluegrass and screaming, and then,
love again
like a streetcar turning the corner
on time,
the city waiting,
the wine and the flowers,
the water walking across the lake
and summer and winter and summer and summer
and winter again.

And something I use as mantra:

There you go: behind for 8 races, winner in
the 9th. Nothing big, but bankroll intact. This comes,
my friends, out of years of training. There are thorough-
bred horses and thoroughbred bettors. What you do is
stay with your plays and let them come to you. Loving
a woman is the same way, or loving life. You've
got to work a bit for it. In a day or 2 I'll go again
and get off better.