Dinosauria, we – castrated debauched disinherited

I’ve been reading literary and movie blogs recently.   Not that I’m denying that Iraq and AWB are important or anything, it’s just that there’s only so many times you can say the same thing before  outrage fatigue begins to set in. Chekhov’s Mistress is a tasty US literary blog by Bud Paar, and I especially  liked his take on pseudo-Beat poet Charles Bukowski, who made Kerouac look like a limp-membered wooz.   Bukowski wasn’t actually  a great  poet per se, think Eminem 30  years earlier:

Bukowski and friend

Bukowski was an ornery ugly man who didn’t care what anyone thought of him (until he softened up just a little bit later in life). This it would seem was the key to his success, this ugliness and fuck-you to the worldedness.

However, like Marshall Mathers, Bukowski had a talent for expressing raw, authentic experience succinctly:

Born into this
Into hospitals which are so expensive that it’s cheaper to die
Into lawyers who charge so much it’s cheaper to plead guilty
Into a country where the jails are full and the madhouses closed
Into a place where the masses elevate fools into rich heroes
Born into this
Walking and living through this
Dying because of this
Muted because of this …

Bud Paar has a not dissimilar gift in prose:

Bukowski says it for you. It ain’t complicated, but he says it with an authoritative rhythm. In fact, I noticed that Bukowski speaks and reads his poetry with the same type of cadence, like he was a walking smoking drinking cursing poetry machine and there was only a thin line between life and poetry.

There’s some damn good writing out on them thar blogs. If only I had twenty pairs of eyes.  

About Ken Parish

Ken Parish is a legal academic, with research areas in public law (constitutional and administrative law), civil procedure and teaching & learning theory and practice. He has been a legal academic for almost 20 years. Before that he ran a legal practice in Darwin for 15 years and was a Member of the NT Legislative Assembly for almost 4 years in the early 1990s.
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18 years ago

This appears to be a post on Gov-Gen Sedgwick’s long lost uncle Bukowski.

Francis Xavier Holden
18 years ago

I was drawn to read Bukowski years ago by these lines:

it’s not the large things that
send a man to the
madhouse. death he’s ready for, or
murder, incest, robbery, fire, flood…
no, it’s the continuing series of small tragedies
that send a man to the
not the death of his love
but a shoelace that snaps
with no time left …


From the shoelace

Nicholas Gruen
18 years ago

“ugliness and fuck-you to the worldedness” – Socrates – also famous for his ugliness – ran a good line in the same.

derrida derider
derrida derider
18 years ago

“Bukowski was an ornery ugly man …”
Yep, so which person in the photo is Bukowski?