Charles Bukowski

(16 August 1920 – 9 March 1994 / Andernach)

As The Sparrow

Poem by Charles Bukowski

To give life you must take life,
and as our grief falls flat and hollow
upon the billion-blooded sea
I pass upon serious inward-breaking shoals rimmed
with white-legged, white-bellied rotting creatures
lengthily dead and rioting against surrounding scenes.
Dear child, I only did to you what the sparrow
did to you; I am old when it is fashionable to be
young; I cry when it is fashionable to laugh.
I hated you when it would have taken less courage
to love.


Comments about As The Sparrow by Charles Bukowski

  • Khairul AhsanKhairul Ahsan (3/8/2019 8:39:00 PM)

    Not impressed with the first line of the poem, but the contradictions juxtaposed in the last few lines seem to be meaningful.(Report)Reply

    0 person liked.
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  • Dr Tony BrahminDr Tony Brahmin (3/8/2019 12:22:00 PM)

    o give life you must take life, very telling verses. tony(Report)Reply

    0 person liked.
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  • Bri EdwardsBri Edwards (3/8/2019 10:34:00 AM)

    what IS this ex-postal worker (like me) saying? ? ? ? ? goofy, if ya ask me! ! ! !

    bri

    :)(Report)Reply

    1 person liked.
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  • Ratnakar Mandlik (3/8/2019 7:49:00 AM)

    Wonderfully crafted life song rich with human limitations, flights of imagery and expiating in the aftermath.(Report)Reply

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  • Bernard F. AsuncionBernard F. Asuncion (3/8/2019 12:40:00 AM)

    An excellent write by Charles Bukowski.......(Report)Reply

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  • V Vijaya kumar (1/16/2019 6:21:00 AM)

    Bukowski prevails every word..his soul clung every letter(Report)Reply

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  • charles guertler (3/13/2018 3:55:00 AM)

    HIS WORDS ARE CAREFULLY DRAWN OUT FROM HIS SOUL. SO TRUTHFULLY TOLD.(Report)Reply

    0 person liked.
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  • Subhas Chandra ChakraSubhas Chandra Chakra (12/11/2017 11:54:00 AM)

    our grief falls flat and hollow
    upon the billion-blooded sea
    Beautiful poem shared.
    10+++(Report)Reply

    1 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Edward Kofi LouisEdward Kofi Louis (12/11/2017 11:46:00 AM)

    'As our grief falls'! ! Thanks for sharing this poem with us.(Report)Reply

    2 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Savita TyagiSavita Tyagi (12/11/2017 11:37:00 AM)

    War, peace, love and hate life and death all complex issues with no black and white solution. Beauty of this poem lies in stark realization of some dark colors overlapping bright colors of life.(Report)Reply

    3 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
  • Ramesh T ARamesh T A (12/11/2017 4:06:00 AM)

    A brief poem by Bukowski makes all think about life in comparison with that a sparrow as far as what one has to do to a child in a philosophic way!(Report)Reply

    2 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
  • Tom Allport (12/11/2017 3:43:00 AM)

    a poem of dark sentiments yet when fully understood they tell a truth? ..........superbly penned.(Report)Reply

    2 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
  • Deepak Kumar Pattanayak (12/11/2017 1:14:00 AM)

    Like for like or something for something which is retribution or requital or retaliation for wrong and grievance is
    what Bukowski wants to say perhaps........very profound and insightful..........thanks for sharing(Report)Reply

    2 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • P. MasonP. Mason (11/17/2016 9:52:00 AM)

    I like Bukowski; I suspect because so much of his work seems, to me, to be deeply insightful and also fatally flawed at the same time. Perhaps a mirror of his own personality and life. This piece intrigues me only because I don't know of the stresses he was coping with when he penned this.(Report)Reply

    4 person liked.
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  • * Sunprincess * (1/21/2016 8:27:00 PM)

    ..........nicely penned with a fabulous vocabulary ★
    I pass upon serious inward-breaking shoals rimmed
    with white-legged, white-bellied rotting creatures
    lengthily dead and rioting against surrounding scenes.(Report)Reply

    1 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
  • Thomas CaseThomas Case (11/30/2015 9:00:00 AM)

    fantstic....Buk is a real poet, His beer stained genius shines through again.(Report)Reply

    3 person liked.
    2 person did not like.
  • Georgios Venetopoulos (9/17/2014 5:28:00 PM)

    I am a true poet when it is fashionable to be a writer of arrhythmic lines. The best I can say as an answer to this write.(Report)Reply

    3 person liked.
    6 person did not like.
  • Kevin PatrickKevin Patrick (5/7/2014 9:17:00 PM)

    I am old when it is fashionable to be
    young;

    A timeless sentiment for everyone.(Report)Reply

    5 person liked.
    2 person did not like.
  • Marvin Brato (10/27/2013 10:04:00 PM)

    Brilliant write by Charles!(Report)Reply

    4 person liked.
    3 person did not like.
  • Jonny BrackneyJonny Brackney (12/13/2011 9:16:00 AM)

    Charles Bukowski is by far my favourite writer.(Report)Reply

    16 person liked.
    5 person did not like.
Read all 23 comments »




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Read poems about / on: courage, grief, child, sea, life, love, children, hate



Poem Submitted: Monday, January 13, 2003