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Charles Bukowski

(16 August 1920 – 9 March 1994 / Andernach)

The Poetry Reading


at high noon

Submitted: Monday, January 13, 2003

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  • Nick King-briggs (10/14/2012 7:47:00 PM)

    at high noon
    at a small college near the beach
    sober
    the sweat running down my arms
    a spot of sweat on the table
    I flatten it with my finger
    blood money blood money
    my god they must think I love this like the others
    but it's for bread and beer and rent
    blood money
    I'm tense lousy feel bad
    poor people I'm failing I'm failing
    a woman gets up
    walks out
    slams the door
    a dirty poem
    somebody told me not to read dirty poems
    here
    it's too late.
    my eyes can't see some lines
    I read it
    out-
    desperate trembling
    lousy
    they can't hear my voice
    and I say,
    I quit, that's it, I'm
    finished.
    and later in my room
    there's scotch and beer:
    the blood of a coward.
    this then
    will be my destiny:
    scrabbling for pennies in tiny dark halls
    reading poems I have long since beome tired
    of.
    and I used to think
    that men who drove buses
    or cleaned out latrines
    or murdered men in alleys were
    fools. (Report) Reply

Read all 2 comments »

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