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A Smile To Remember - Poem by Charles Bukowski

we had goldfish and they circled around and around
in the bowl on the table near the heavy drapes
covering the picture window and
my mother, always smiling, wanting us all
to be happy, told me, 'be happy Henry!'
and she was right: it's better to be happy if you
can
but my father continued to beat her and me several times a week while
raging inside his 6-foot-two frame because he couldn't
understand what was attacking him from within.

my mother, poor fish,
wanting to be happy, beaten two or three times a
week, telling me to be happy: 'Henry, smile!
why don't you ever smile?'

and then she would smile, to show me how, and it was the
saddest smile I ever saw

one day the goldfish died, all five of them,
they floated on the water, on their sides, their
eyes still open,
and when my father got home he threw them to the cat
there on the kitchen floor and we watched as my mother
smiled


Comments about A Smile To Remember by Charles Bukowski

  • Rookie CHARLES (8/12/2018 4:02:00 AM)

    BE HAPPY, JUST BE HAPPY, NO MATTER HOW HARD IT CAN BE, EVEN JESUS WAS HAPPOY THROUGH HARD TIME, (Report) Reply

    1 person liked.
    4 person did not like.
  • Gold Star - 8,040 Points Britte Ninad (8/10/2018 12:54:00 AM)

    heart touching writings-

    and then she would smile, to show me how, and it was the
    saddest smile I ever saw (Report) Reply

  • Freshman - 529 Points Lily Ives (7/4/2018 10:47:00 PM)

    This poem is so sad. She experienced torment, and thought her children that we are slaves to our suffering. He spent the rest of his life, trying to heal his father's pain...but my father continued to beat her and me... while raging inside... because he couldn't understand what was attacking him from within. It seems the same fate befell Charles and that he drank because he couldn't understand what was attacking him from within. Powerful poem. (Report) Reply

Read all 101 comments »

Poems About Smile

  1. 1. A Smile To Remember , Charles Bukowski
  2. 2. Hold You In My Smile , Ernestine Northover
  3. 3. Smile At Me , Ernestine Northover
  4. 4. You Smile Upon Your Friend To-Day , Alfred Edward Housman
  5. 5. Smile, Smile, Smile , Wilfred Owen
  6. 6. A Smile , Kurt Hearth
  7. 7. Reason To Smile , Lendl Ian Servillon
  8. 8. The Gardener Xl: An Unbelieving Smile , Rabindranath Tagore
  9. 9. The Made To Order Smile , Paul Laurence Dunbar
  10. 10. Awake To Smile , Robert William Service
  11. 11. Smile--Smile--Smile , Lealon R. Tate
  12. 12. A Smile For A Smile - A Tribute To All , Samanyan Lakshminarayanan
  13. 13. Hide Behind A Smile , Ivy Christou
  14. 14. Fake Smile , Victor Osorio
  15. 15. The Meaning Of My Smile , scarlet red
  16. 16. I Came To Buy A Smile—today , Emily Dickinson
  17. 17. A Smile , Jennifer Rondeau
  18. 18. Smile , Anoop Lokkur
  19. 19. Times When I Smile , Sandra Osborne
  20. 20. (smile) , Heather Noble
  21. 21. Pass A Smile , Sumita Datta
  22. 22. The Best Smile , Rajaram Ramachandran
  23. 23. Smile-Once More , prasanna kumari
  24. 24. Smile Little Man , Sylvia Chidi
  25. 25. I Smile , Mariana Zita
  26. 26. The Lost Smile , prasanna kumari
  27. 27. Smile, Smile, Smile , Walterrean Salley
  28. 28. Her Smile Was Shaped Like Other Smiles , Emily Dickinson
  29. 29. Smile For Me , Jay P Narain
  30. 30. Woone Smile Mwore , William Barnes
  31. 31. Smile Please , suchul Jin
  32. 32. Smile Woman Smile , Elizabeth Jacqueline Mpanga
  33. 33. A Smile Is Smile , Akhtar Jawad
  34. 34. The Mind's Strange Beauty, With Its Smile , Michael Shepherd
  35. 35. Please Smile To Me , unknown poet
  36. 36. The Very Memory Of Your Smile , LLM Mbatha
  37. 37. Peeling Eggs Makes Me Smile , Mary Nagy
  38. 38. Come Smile At Me Again , Herbert Nehrlich
  39. 39. Smile , Michael Samad
  40. 40. Smile , Frantz Dorsain
  41. 41. Only A Smile , Mathilde Blind
  42. 42. Your Smile..... , jibin joseph
  43. 43. Mother's Smile , Herbert Nehrlich
  44. 44. Stolen Smile Part 2 , Marie Joyce B. Negapatan
  45. 45. Smile Once More , Ernestine Northover
  46. 46. I Wish I Made You Smile , John Kipling Lewis
  47. 47. Smile Always! , Dr. A.Celestine Raj Manohar ..
  48. 48. A Thousand Smile From You , Gil Gregorio
  49. 49. Sunshine Of Your Smile , David Harris
  50. 50. A Faint Smile In Her Teary Eyes , nimal dunuhinga
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