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Saturday, June 12, 2010

"An Almost Made Up Poem"


I see you drinking at the fountain with tiny
blue hands, no, your hands are not tiny
they are small, and the fountain is in France
where you wrote me that last letter and
I answered and never heard from you again.
you used to write insane poems about
ANGELS AND GOD, all in upper case, and you
knew famous artists and most of them
were your lovers, and I wrote back, it' all right,
go ahead, enter their lives, I' not jealous
because we' never met.  we got close once in
New Orleans, one half block, but never met, never
touched.  so you went with the famous and wrote
about the famous, and, of course, what you found out
is that the famous are worried about
their fame - not the beautiful young girl in bed
with them, who gives them that, and then awakens
in the morning to write upper case poems about
ANGELS AND GOD.  we know God is dead, they' told
us, but listening to you I wasn' sure.  maybe
it was the upper case.  you were one of the
editors, "her, print her, she' mad but she'
magic.  there' no lie in her fire."  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' happen.  your letters got sadder.
your lovers betrayed you.  kid, I wrote back, all
lovers betray.  it didn' 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.  I wrote back but never
heard again.  a friend wrote me of your suicide
3 or 4 months after it happened.  if I had met you
I would probably have been unfair to you or you
to me.  it was best like this.


I'd love to know who this woman was; or was she just a figment?

18 comments:

Gypsy Purple said...

I really enjoyed this!

alaine@éclectique said...

Gypsy, I'm glad somebody else does! I enjoy this poet; he's earthy, different.

Marion Williams-Bennett said...

I enjoyed this too! I wondered the same thing you did, but this line made me think he really knew her...

I loved you
like a man loves a woman he never touches, only
writes to, keeps little photographs of..

that feels so real to me!

Thank you for sharing this poem!

Betsy said...

It does leave you wanting to know more, doesn't it?

Derrick said...

Hi Alaine,

Your countrywoman, Rallentanda, had us all using Bukowski's poetry this week to write a cento; a poem composed of unrelated lines from several of a poet's works and I used this first line (amongst many) as part of mine! Bukowski's poetry is different.

Sam Liu said...

Wow...that is one striking poem, so infinitely poignant - it has a surreal and passionate beauty. Thank you for sharing and introducing me to this wonderful poet.

alaine@éclectique said...

Marion, perhaps a star-gazing fan; he wrote to her, she responded...who knows.

alaine@éclectique said...

Betsy, yes but I also felt a bit uncomfortable, as if reading a private letter!

alaine@éclectique said...

Derrick, well that's amazing; of all the thousands of poets, we both honed in on Bukowski! His poetry certainly is different; after reading a lot of it, I had bad dreams!

alaine@éclectique said...

Sam, my pleasure; the good thing being you now know of him years before I did.

maggie's garden said...

I'd not hear of him before today but will be looking for him now. This is really different...and I love different. Thanks for the introduction Alaine. Hope you're enjoying a peaceful day.

alaine@éclectique said...

MG - Karen, I like different too. Had a very peaceful day yesterday; went for a walk, did some cross-stitch, downloaded some new music and this morning I'm off for a walk with a friend, in the fog.

FireLight said...

Bukowski can be really a rough and tumble visionary! "His work is not for sissies," as one of my favorite professors would have said. This piece reveals some genuine tenderness from a poet who titled one collection LOVE IS A DOG FROM HELL. He also once commented that 90% of his work was autobiographical. I think that could be said of many poets. He can be disturbing as your bad dreams demonstrated!

maggie's garden said...

Hi Alaine,
While looking in Bukowski...I found a youtube clip of a short film he did called The Suicide. He is really an interesting character. Thanks for sharing him...I had some fun with it. Also found some great quotes of his on this site
http://www.kerouacalley.com/bukowski.html
Thanks.

alaine@éclectique said...

Firelight, Maggie's Garden sent me a link and I watched some film of him there. I remember now watching a documentary about him on our ABC and being quite shocked. More bad dreams tonight, I feel.

alaine@éclectique said...

MG - Karen, thanks for that link, I'll enjoy reading further there. I had a look at The Suicide on YT and a few others. My gosh, he really was a rough piece of work! As I said to Firelight, I now remember seeing a documentary about him. I think the poem I've put up here would be one of his tamest!

Lyn said...

Bukowski..wonderful writer..this was a stream of consciousness that I envy..will be influenced by!! Truth, real, true, truth? It's as if...

alaine@éclectique said...

Lyn, I know! Some cafe owner said he'd come in every afternoon and just write; at least 10 poems!