Charles Bukowski

(16 August 1920 – 9 March 1994 / Andernach)

air and light and time and space - Poem by Charles Bukowski

'- you know, I've either had a family, a job, something
has always been in the
but now
I've sold my house, I've found this
place, a large studio, you should see the space and
the light.
for the first time in my life I'm going to have a place and
the time to
no baby, if you're going to create
you're going to create whether you work
16 hours a day in a coal mine
you're going to create in a small room with 3 children
while you're on
you're going to create with part of your mind and your
body blown
you're going to create blind
you're going to create with a cat crawling up your
back while
the whole city trembles in earthquakes, bombardment,
flood and fire.
baby, air and light and time and space
have nothing to do with it
and don't create anything
except maybe a longer life to find
new excuses

Comments about air and light and time and space by Charles Bukowski

  • Paresh Chakra (11/27/2018 4:22:00 AM)

    It is a great thought Poem (Report) Reply

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  • (4/14/2018 9:45:00 PM)

    Good poem about the secret of creativity... a long but fruitless life is the choice of the ordinary, not of the gifted. (Report) Reply

  • Susan Williams (4/14/2018 4:46:00 PM)

    He is not what one would call an indecisive poet, is he? The unvarnished truth is what he deals with and too bad if you are uncomfortable with it- -love a poet whose stance is firm. (Report) Reply

  • Carl Roussell (4/14/2018 8:19:00 AM)

    This poem seems to capture the need to create very well. One's muse needs only thought and heart; no excuses. Really like this poem. (Report) Reply

  • Kumarmani Mahakul (4/14/2018 7:01:00 AM)

    Beautifully inscribed. Nice poem. (Report) Reply

  • Robert Murray Smith (4/14/2018 5:05:00 AM)

    The central message of this poem is that nothing gets in the way of creativity. The only thing that will do so is writer's block.Not a great poem but it does its job well. (Report) Reply

  • Paul Brookes (4/14/2018 3:51:00 AM)

    This is the truth If you write or create you will do so no matter what in my teens I had a spell of being homeless and lives on the streets and I still wrote no matter what I wrote i suppose that the thing it is a compulsion Now if its good or bad that's for others to decide but having a dedicated space to write, paint or sculpt makes no difference because it is an imperative and you have no choice I always read Bukowski with a sense of cynicism but this one's spot on (Report) Reply

  • Anil Kumar Panda (4/14/2018 1:45:00 AM)

    'you're going to create whether you work
    16 hours a day in a coal mine
    you're going to create in a small room with 3 children
    while you're on
    welfare, '... is true. If you have a zeal to create anything new, you can do it at any circumstances. There must be a will to go on. Excellent poetry.
    (Report) Reply

  • Geeta Radhakrishna Menon (4/14/2018 1:31:00 AM)

    Glen, i liked your story and the comment on this poem.
    Is it creating a blind, or mind or a cat crawling up your back?
    Difficult to comprehend
    (Report) Reply

  • Ruta Mohapatra (4/14/2018 1:31:00 AM)

    Yes, I fully agree. Thanks for sharing (Report) Reply

  • Bernard F. Asuncion (4/14/2018 1:30:00 AM)

    Such a great write by Charles Bukowski... so interesting piece👍👍👍 (Report) Reply

  • Glen Kappy (4/14/2017 6:18:00 PM)

    this reminds me of a conversation with a guy who invited me out to lunch to get me into amway. (i didn't know that was what he was going to do.) part of his spiel was that he always wanted to be a missionary but was too busy just making a living but with amway he'd have enough wealth to do it. sad, eh? -glen kappy (Report) Reply

    (4/14/2018 12:38:00 PM)

    Amen Glen; sad indeed. Very good comment Glen.

  • Susan Williams (4/14/2017 1:36:00 PM)

    Nailed it and nailed it in inimitable Bukowski style so many of us love (Report) Reply

  • (4/14/2017 10:33:00 AM)

    The only space that is needed is that space in the mind which says: Feed me with your creativity and I shall reward you beyond your greatest expectations. I can't think of one poem that I didn't like by this creative genius. Awesome! (Report) Reply

  • Savita Tyagi (4/14/2017 9:33:00 AM)

    Interesting poem! Outside environment has as much effect on being creative as our internal state of mind. Will to create can never be overestimated but there is something else called inspiration that is the guiding factor in creating. When I search within to know how, when and from where that inspiration is born I can never solve this mystery. It is like its own puzzle just to be used and worked upon without knowing its origin. (Report) Reply

  • (4/14/2017 4:01:00 AM)

    a very creative piece of writing about the need to make something? anything? forget the excuses just do! .............superbly writing. (Report) Reply

  • Lantz Pierre (4/14/2017 3:40:00 AM)

    Bukowski always means well. Even when he believed he didn't mean well, and was simply being mean. Those good intentions make him endearing. But he just got it so wrong so often. Sometimes when you scrape away the rot and maggots of the muscle from the bone even the bone is rotten. Often enough he found a firm skeleton to hang his observations on, but not this time. The bone is there, he's not off in left field, but it takes more than the will to create to be creative with what you have. If basic human needs are not met than the impulse to create cannot have high enough priority to be fulfilled. Yes, a self-destructive drunken sot can still be ingeniously genius, sometimes, but he also frequently controlled his circumstances without compromise to will his creations into existence. Personally, his poems will never be sufficient justification for the crap-ass way he treated people and led his life. Obviously, my priorities are different than his were. (Report) Reply

    (1/20/2018 3:09:00 PM)

    How can you say always mean well and then say he treated people in a crap-ass way? You are wasting words. Bukowski says clearly that, if we have enough bread and a place to sleep, the creative will create SOMETHING, and the uncreative cannot, even if the environment is changed.

  • Edward Kofi Louis (4/14/2017 2:15:00 AM)

    'A longer life'! Thanks for sharing. (Report) Reply

  • Bernard F. Asuncion (4/14/2017 12:42:00 AM)

    For the first time in my life.... thanks for posting.... (Report) Reply

  • (4/23/2016 7:06:00 PM)

    ............beautifully thought provoking ★ to create we need space (Report) Reply

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Poem Submitted: Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Poem Edited: Wednesday, February 10, 2016

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