3 Fragments for Charles Bukowski

(found scrawled on a forgotten notepad)


Mozart wrote his first music at 5,
Rimbaud his last poem at 19.
we will sleep, you & I, for 30 odd years
work at jobs we hate for another 12,
search for things we’ve lost
for one full year,
spend 6 months
plotting murders
we’ll never dare commit
waiting in queues
for junk we don’t need.
and the time spent thinking
of other ways we could live
rolls into minutes, hours, weeks,
flotsam on a sea of clockwork.


your sleeping friends are gargoyled
Da Vinci’s grotesques conjured into life
like Golems with the name of God
nestled beneath their tongues.
they are sprawled around the room
in unnatural shapes, absurd angles,
where they landed the night before.
you have to go to work with ten minutes sleep
and a vague fugue of memory
that you drank an ashtray /
fucked someone or something /
made boasts and threats you cannot keep.
through accident of birth or conscience
none of the sleeping have to rise
and you curse your gallows of a family tree
a long-line of peasants
since your ancestors first flopped onto dry land
when they should have stayed in the sea.
stepping over them you resist the urge
to stand on a face or two
on your way out.
just to even the score.


even the stars look sinister,
blinking like eyes at judas-holes.
hiding from your landlord,
as you peer back in the skylight,
hearing the sound of him weeping,
the gnashing of teeth
and lamentations
at what you’ve done
to his what was once his flat
and the rent that remains the stuff of fiction.
perched on the treacherous, mossed tiles
of a four storey victorian tenement
clinging to the aerial,
whispering to yourself,
under your breath,
this will one day be a story,
this will one day be a story,
this will one day…

For those interested, here’s a piece I wrote on the late lamented patron saint of assholes Charles Bukowski.

This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.