Poésies de Charles Bukowski

usPoésie américaine


  • 40,000

    at the track today,
    Father's Day,
    each paid admission was
    entitled to a wallet
    and each contained a
    little surprise.


  • 8 Count

    from my bed
    I watch
    3 birds
    on a telephone
    one flies
    one is left,
    it too
    is gone.



  • back to the machine gun

    I awaken about noon and go out to get the mail
    in my old torn bathrobe.
    I'm hung over
    hair down in my eyes

  • Be Kind

    we are always asked
    to understand the other person's
    no matter how
    foolish or
    one is asked

  • Big Night On The Town

    drunk on the dark streets of some city,
    it's night, you're lost, where's your
    you enter a bar to find yourself,

  • bit Intel 8088 chip

    with an Apple Macintosh
    you can't run Radio Shack programs
    in its disc drive.
    nor can a Commodore 64
    drive read a file

  • Bluebird

    there's a bluebird in my heart that
    wants to get out
    but I'm too tough for him,
    I say, stay in there, I'm not going


  • Carson McCullers

    she died of alcoholism
    wrapped in a blanket
    on a deck chair
    on an ocean
    all her books of
    terrified loneliness

  • Cause And Effect

    the best often die by their own hand
    just to get away,
    and those left behind
    can never quite understand
    why anybody

  • close to greatness

    at one stage in my life
    I met a man who claimed to have
    visited Pound at St. Elizabeths.
    then I met a woman who not only

  • Confession

    waiting for death
    like a cat
    that will jump on the
    I am so very sorry for
    my wife
    she will see this

  • Consummation Of Grief

    I even hear the mountains
    the way they laugh
    up and down their blue sides
    and down in the water
    the fish cry
    and the water

  • Cows In Art Class

    good weather
    is like
    good women-
    it doesn't always happen
    and when it does
    it doesn't
    always last.
    man is
    more stable:

  • Curtain

    the final curtain on one of the longest running
    musicals ever, some people claim to have
    seen it over one hundred times.

  • Cut While Shaving

    It's never quite right, he said, the way people look,
    the way the music sounds, the way the words are


  • Death Wants More Death

    death wants more death, and its webs are full:
    I remember my father's garage, how child-like
    I would brush the corpses of flies

  • Decline

    naked along the side of the house,
    8 a.m., spreading sesame seed oil
    over my body, Jesus, have I come
    to this?


  • Eat Your Heart Out

    I've come by, she says, to tell you
    that this is it. I'm not kidding, it's
    over. this is it.

  • Eulogy To A Hell Of A Dame

    some dogs who sleep At night
    must dream of bones
    and I remember your bones
    in flesh
    and best
    in that dark green dress


  • Finish

    We are like roses that have never bothered to
    bloom when we should have bloomed and
    it is as if

  • finished?

    the critics now have me
    drinking champagne and
    driving a BMW
    and also married to a
    socialite from
    Philadelphia's Main Line

  • Flophouse

    you haven't lived
    until you've been in a
    with nothing but one
    light bulb
    and 56 men
    squeezed together
    on cots

  • For Jane

    225 days under grass
    and you know more than I.
    they have long taken your blood,
    you are a dry stick in a basket.

  • For Jane: With All the Love I Had, Which Was Not Enough:

    I pick up the skirt,
    I pick up the sparkling beads
    in black,
    this thing that moved once
    around flesh,
    and I call God a liar,

  • Freedom

    he drank wine all night of the
    28th, and he kept thinking of her:
    the way she walked and talked and loved

  • Friends Within The Darkness

    I can remember starving in a
    small room in a strange city
    shades pulled down, listening to
    classical music



  • having the flu and with nothing else to do

    I read a book about John Dos Passos and according to
    the book once radical-communist

  • hello, how are you?

    this fear of being what they are:
    at least they are not out on the street, they
    are careful to stay indoors, those

  • Here I Am ...

    drunk again at 3 a.m. at the end of my 2nd bottle
    of wine, I have typed from a dozen to 15 pages of
    an old man

  • His Wife, The Painter

    There are sketches on the walls of men and women and ducks,
    and outside a large green bus swerves through traffic like

  • Hooray Say The Roses

    hooray say the roses, today is blamesday
    and we are red as blood.
    hooray say the roses, today is Wednesday

  • Hot

    she was hot, she was so hot
    I didn't want anybody else to have her,
    and if I didn't get home on time

  • How Is Your Heart?

    during my worst times
    on the park benches
    in the jails
    or living with
    I always had this certain


  • I like your books

    In the betting line the other
    man behind me asked,
    "are you Henry
    "uh huh," I answered.

  • I Made A Mistake

    I reached up into the top of the closet
    and took out a pair of blue panties
    and showed them to her and
    asked "are these yours?"

  • I Met A Genius

    I met a genius on the train
    about 6 years old,
    he sat beside me
    and as the train
    ran down along the coast

  • I'm In Love

    she's young, she said,
    but look at me,
    I have pretty ankles,
    and look at my wrists, I have pretty
    o my god,

  • it was just a little while ago

    almost dawn
    blackbirds on the telephone wire
    as I eat yesterday's
    forgotten sandwich
    at 6 a.m.

  • It's Ours

    there is always that space there
    just before they get to us
    that space
    that fine relaxer
    the breather
    while say



  • Layover

    Making love in the sun, in the morning sun
    in a hotel room
    above the alley
    where poor men poke for bottles;

  • Let It Enfold You

    either peace or happiness,
    let it enfold you
    when I was a young man
    I felt these things were
    dumb, unsophisticated.

  • Love & Fame & Death

    it sits outside my window now
    like and old woman going to market;
    it sits and watches me,
    it sweats nevously

  • Luck

    we were young
    at this
    machine. . .


  • magical mystery tour

    I am in this low-slung sports car
    painted a deep, rich yellow
    driving under an Italian sun.
    I have a British accent.

  • Mama

    here I am
    in the ground
    my mouth
    I can't even say
    the dogs run by and stop and piss

  • Marina

    majestic, majic
    my little girl is
    on the carpet-
    out the door
    picking a flower, ha!
    an old man,

  • Melancholia

    the history of melancholia
    includes all of us.

  • Metamorphosis

    a girlfriend came in
    built me a bed
    scrubbed and waxed the kitchen floor
    scrubbed the walls
    cleaned the toilet

  • my computer

    "what?" they say, "you got a
    computer ?"
    it's like I have sold out to
    the enemy.
    I had no idea so many
    people were prejudiced

  • my father

    was a truly amazing man
    he pretended to be
    even though we lived on beans and mush and weenies

  • My First Affair With That Older Woman

    when I look back now
    at the abuse I took from
    I feel shame that I was so
    but I must say

  • my friend, the parking lot attendant

    he's a dandy
    small moustache
    usually sucking on a cigar
    he tends to lean into cars as he
    transacts business

  • My Groupie

    I read last Saturday in the
    redwoods outside of Santa Cruz
    and I was about 3/4's finished
    when I heard a long high scream


  • New Mexico

    I was fairly drunk when it
    began and I took out my bottle and used it
    along the way. I was reading a week or two after

  • Nirvana

    not much chance,

  • No. 6

    I'll settle for the 6 horse

  • Now

    I sit here on the 2nd floor
    hunched over in yellow
    still pretending to be
    a writer.
    some damned gall,
    at 71,



  • Paris

    even in calmer times
    have I ever
    dreamed of
    bicycling through that
    wearing a

  • Poem For My 43rd Birthday

    To end up alone
    in a tomb of a room
    without cigarettes
    or wine--
    just a lightbulb
    and a potbelly,
    and glad to have

  • Poetry

    a lot of

  • Prayer In Bad Weather

    by God, I don't know what to

  • Pull A String, A Puppet Moves

    each man must realize
    that it can all disappear very
    the cat, the woman, the job,
    the front tire,


  • Question And Answer

    he sat naked and drunk in a room of summer
    night, running the blade of the knife
    under his fingernails, smiling, thinking


  • Rain

    a symphony orchestra.

  • Rain Or Shine

    the vultures at the zoo
    (all three of them)
    sit very quietly in their
    caged tree
    and below
    on the ground

  • Raw With Love

    little dark girl with
    kind eyes
    when it comes time to
    use the knife
    I won't flinch and
    I won't blame

  • Revolt In The Ranks

    I have just spent one-hour-and-a-half
    handicapping tomorrow's
    when am I going to get at the poems?

  • Rhyming Poem

    the goldfish sing all night with guitars,
    and the whores go down with the stars,
    the whores go down with the stars


  • Shoes

    when you're young
    a pair of
    high-heeled shoes
    just sitting
    in the closet
    can fire your
    when you're old

  • Short Order

    I took my girlfriend to your last poetry reading,
    she said.
    yes, yes? I asked.
    she's young and pretty, she said.
    and? I asked.

  • Show Biz

    I can't have it
    and you can't have it
    and we won't
    get it
    so don't bet on it
    or even think about
    just get out of bed

  • Sleep

    she was a short one
    getting fat and she had once been
    beautiful and
    she drank the wine
    she drank the wine in bed and

  • small conversation in the afternoon with John Fante

    he said, "I was working in Hollywood when Faulkner was
    working in Hollywood and he was

  • So Now?

    the words have come and gone,
    I sit ill.
    the phone rings, the cats sleep.
    Linda vacuums.
    I am waiting to live,
    waiting to die.

  • Some People

    some people never go crazy.
    me, sometimes I'll lie down behind the couch
    for 3 or 4 days.
    they'll find me there.

  • Somebody

    god I got the sad blue blues,

  • Something For The Touts, The Nuns, The Grocery Clerks, And You . . .

    we have everything and we have nothing
    and some men do it in churches
    and some men do it by tearing butterflies
    in half

  • splash

    the illusion is that you are simply
    reading this poem.
    the reality is that this is
    more than a
    this is a beggar's knife.

  • Tous les poèmes de Charles Bukowski débutant par la lettre S


  • The Aliens

    you may not believe it
    but there are people
    who go through life with
    very little
    friction or
    they dress well, eat

  • The Blackbirds are Rough Today

    lonely as a dry and used orchard
    spread over the earth
    for use and surrender.
    shot down like an ex-pug selling

  • the crunch

    too much too little
    too fat
    too thin
    or nobody.
    laughter or
    strangers with faces like
    the backs of

  • The Genius Of The Crowd

    there is enough treachery, hatred violence absurdity in the average
    human being to supply any given army on any given day

  • the German hotel

    the German hotel was very strange and expensive and had
    double doors to the rooms, very thick doors, and it over-

  • the great slob

    I was always a natural slob
    I liked to lay upon the bed
    in undershirt (stained, of
    course) (and with cigarette
    shoes off

  • The History Of One Tough Motherfucker

    he came to the door one night wet thin beaten and
    a white cross-eyed tailless cat

  • The House

    They are building a house
    half a block down
    and I sit up here
    with the shades down
    listening to the sounds,

  • The Icecream People

    the lady has me temporarily off the bottle
    and now the pecker stands up
    however, things change overnight--

  • the lucky ones

    stuck in the rain on the freeway, 6:15 p.m.,
    these are the lucky ones, these are the

  • Tous les poèmes de Charles Bukowski débutant par la lettre T



  • Yes Yes

    when God created love he didn't help most
    when God created dogs He didn't help dogs
    when God created plants that was average

  • Young in New Orleans

    starving there, sitting around the bars,
    and at night walking the streets for
    the moonlight always seemed fake