Body & Spirit: "Question and Answer" The Poetic Wisdom Of Bukowski

he sat naked and drunk in a room of summer night,
running the blade of the knife
under his fingernails, smiling, thinking
of all the letters he had received telling him that
the way he lived and wrote about that -

it had kept them going when all seemed truly hopeless.

putting the blade on the table,
he flicked it with a finger
and it whirled
in a flashing circle
under the light.

who the hell is going to save me? he thought.

as the knife stopped spinning
the answer came: 

you're going to have to save yourself.

still smiling,
a: he lit a cigarette
b: he poured another drink
c: gave the blade another spin.

~Charles Bukowski ~ from The Last Night of the Earth Poems

...and I'll leave you with this one:


your life is your life.
know it while you have it.
you are marvellous.
the gods delight
in you.


  1. Love it, Mike, that you call Buk's words 'sweet'! love that.

  2. When I am blue and without any hope,
    That is the time I must not dread and mope.

    I was away for the weekend, and when I returned I again read -- several times -- the two Bukowski poems you posted. It is becoming clearer to me now.

  3. He was not an elegant man, by any means, but I find certain CB's poems to hold an amazingly simple profundity. Happy to know you are appreciating it MikeB.