STREET JOURNAL 8

Standard

by Tom H. Brooks 3

Strange

lounge music
rolling
over me in
dark waves
of sound and rhythm
I sit alone
in the darkness
illuminated
by a single candle flame
and stare deeply into
its fiery blue heart
and look for a revelation
but I am only rewarded by
burning myself again
Drums beat
inside my skull
and haunting
melodic voices
melt down the walls
where spiders crawl
and raccoons scamper
through the attic
of my mind
As I look out the window
the city
glitters far below
I watch car headlights
wind their way
through the hills
and I listen
to the voices
that whisper
in my ear alone
Those nights
those nights alone
like I was the only person
in the world
those nights
in the Hollywood Hills,
they stay with me…
forever
__________
“So I sat back, reclining on sound, listening.  Just in that moment,
that place between silences where the light comes through.”
Bukowski
__________
Now anyone who`s read my strange collections of writings is sure to know of my fondness
for out of the way places, you know, off the common path.  So many choose to flop around
the house with the computer or the TV, or talking on the phone.  I would have to say that I
am hopelessly drawn to forgotten places where ghosts walk; I am called to those places like
a moth to a flame.  All I`m trying to say is that even I, sometimes, find it SO WEIRD, where
I`m at, where I find myself.  For example, as I write this, I`m sitting in the older section of
Chinatown in Downtown Los Angeles.  I am on a shaded bench, drinking a 40oz and listening
to weird Asian music in an ancient mall that has very likely seen busier and better times a
l o n g time ago.  But no more.  Now it is empty.  There is laundry fluttering from upstairs
decks and many stores are boarded up and shuttered.  This strange music floats through
the air and I sit here, listening to the ghosts whispering into my ears in Chinese.
__________
“But the present is no less dark than the past, and its mystery is equal to anything the future
might hold.  Such is the way of the world: one step at a time, one word and then the next.
There are certain things that Blue cannot possibly know at this point.  For knowledge
comes slowly, and when it comes, it is often at great personal expense.
“I`m on my own, he thinks, there`s no one to turn to anymore.  This is followed by several
hours of despondency and self-pity, with Blue thinking once or twice that maybe he`d be
better off dead.  But eventually he works his way out of the gloom.  For Blue is a solid
character on the whole, less given to dark thoughts than most, and if there are moments
when he feels the world is a foul place, who are we to blame him for it?”
“We are not where we are, but in a false position.  Through an infirmity of our natures, we
suppose a case, and put ourselves into it, and hence are in two cases at the same time,
and it is doubly difficult to get out.”
Paul Auster
“Ghosts”  from  “The New York Trilogy”
“New York was an inexhaustible space, a labyrinth of endless steps, and no matter how far
he walked, no matter how well he came to know its streets and neighborhoods, it always
left him with the feeling of being lost.  Lost, not only in the city, but within himself as well.
Each time he took a walk, he felt as though he were leaving himself behind, and by giving
himself up to the movement of the streets, by reducing himself to a seeing eye, he was able
to escape the obligation to think, and this, more than anything else, brought him some measure
of peace, a salutary emptiness within.  The world was outside of him, around him, before him,
and the speed with which it kept changing made it impossible for him to dwell on any one thing
for very long.  Motion was of the essence, the act of putting one foot in front of the other and
allowing himself to follow the drift of his own body.  By wandering aimlessly, all places became
equal and it no longer mattered where he was.  On his best walks, he was able to feel that he
was nowhere.  And this, finally, was all he ever asked of things: to be nowhere.  New York
was the nowhere he had built around himself, and he realized that he had no intention of ever
leaving it again.”
Paul Auster
“City of Glass”  from  “The New York Trilogy”
(foreshadow…..)
_________
change the above ^ to LA and “no matter how far he skateboarded” and we have something here…
_________
Ports O`Call is all but abandoned nowadays.  So I tried an unlocked door in an empty building
and lo and behold, I found myself in an empty studio apartment, pristine and rent free!  I thought
about moving in but then I thought about getting thrown out sooner or later and losing it, so I
changed my mind.  I had to settle for drinking a beer and smoking a joint in there.  Anyway, once,
a long time ago, I lived rent-free for 60 minutes in a studio apartment in Ports O`Call, San Pedro, CA.
_________
Sometimes I ride the bus all night.  I like to see the nocturnal side of Los Angeles, when people crawl
out from under their rocks and go out looking for trouble.  I just go out and play games of fate; I walk,
I skateboard, I wait–a bus comes down the street and I get on it.  It doesn`t matter where it`s going.
I like the randomness of it.  I ride along, going somewhere, going anywhere, and I watch the night city
pass by outside the windows in blurred neon streaks of light.  I close my eyes and feel the night wind
on my face.  I stop anytime I feel like it.  I get off the bus and I explore wherever I land.  I take a power
nap or maybe have a beer.  I sit in the city or by the sea.  I write under a street lamp on a street corner
or I write on the bus like this now.  I watch the sun rise with a coffee.  I lie on the beach all day and do
nothing but think and dream.  I swim in the ocean.  I have another beer and smoke some herb.  I write
more and then I read and then I continue wandering; strange, unfettered, and free, and alone….always
alone and adventuring through the endless sprawl….
_________
On my numerous travels throughout LA, day or night, I always see familiar faces.  Somehow, I always
remember them, and I see them in various places again and again, living their secret lives in their own
ways….as I continue living mine.  Many worlds cross paths everyday but very rarely do they actually
interact.  I wonder if they even notice….
_________
Paseo de Gracia…..I walk down the street I grew up on.  The pine boughs above enclose me in shadows
this twilight eve.  A cool breeze blows leaves down this empty avenue and the smell of gardenias and
night jasmine permeates the air.  The lamp post in front of my old house was put in by my dad and I 20
years ago.  It always reminded me of the magical lamp post in The Chronicles of Narnia and it is shrouded
in a light mist.  My footsteps fall softly as I walk unseen through the darkness and top the hill overlooking
Riviera Village and the sea beyond.  The sun is long gone now.  The sky is an electric sapphire blue with
a band of lavender touching the western horizon in a warm ribbon of soft luminescence.  The street lamps
are in perspective down the dark street behind me.  There is a planet or a star hanging like a glowing spider
beneath a crescent moon.  Stars begin to appear.  The night is cool and clear.  I continue walking north
through my waking dream….
_________
waiting for a bus that never comes…
_________
from Auster`s New York Trilogy…
He had a dream that
he was alone in a room
firing a pistol into a bare, white wall…
_________
Sitting in Santa Monica at the corner of Arizona and 6th, drinking a beer at 2:10am.  Why?  Why not?  Why
do I do the things I do?  I do not know or care.  It is just where I find myself.  I`m listening to the bar people
leave the West End and the tree above me is creaking gently in the night wind.  A woman`s high heels clunk
resoundingly on a nearby sidewalk.  Car doors slam, motors roar to life.  Sirens.  Cursing.  A drunkard sings
an insultingly bad version of The Star-Spangled Banner in the distance, and it echoes through the swiftly
emptying streets.  I sit and stare at the sign across the street….ORACLE…in vivid red neon, and it is reflected
in my tired and bloodshot eyes…
_________
4am…a night mockingbird`s lonely song echoes in the Wilshire corridor.  No cars…nothing…
_________
5:23am, Century City…Santa Monica Blvd and Avenue of the Stars…
I sit as the light creeps into the eastern sky and the skyscrapers tower above me.  The west is a slowly
brightening glow of deep royal blue.  The day comes alive…
_________
ORACLE
_________
 
“scream of the butterfly”
Jim Morrison
_________
“I Was Looking at the Ceiling and Then I Saw the Sky…”
June Jordan
_________
“The poems don`t love us anymore
they don`t want to love us
they don`t want to be poems
Do not summon us, they say
We can`t help you any longer
*             *             *
The 15-year-old girls
I wanted when I was 15
I have them now
it is very pleasant
it is never too late
I advise you all
to become rich and famous”
Leonard Cohen
“The Energy of Slaves”
_________
“Everybody knows that the dice are loaded
everybody rolls with their fingers crossed
everybody knows that the war is over
everybody knows that the good guys lost
everybody knows the fight was fixed
the poor stay poor, the rich stay rich
that`s how it goes
Everybody knows..”
Leonard Cohen
_________
“A Thousand Kisses Deep…”
Leonard Cohen
_________
“Come my friends
`tis not too late to seek a newer world.
Push off and sitting well in order smite
the sounding furrows, for my purpose holds
To sail beyond the sunset, and the baths
of all the western stars until I die.
It may be that the gulfs will wash us down.
It may be that we shall touch the Happy Isles…”
Tennyson
_________
The wind
is breathing
riddles
through the trees
and
the sun
paints the world
in glowing colors
as endless
as grains of sand
on every beach
The tide is rising
and all will be
flooded
with bold
forward momentum…
I am liquid
I am water
I am one
with the rivers
and the mountains
and the sea
I am fluid motion
carving through rocks
and glaciers
and making green
the earth…
I lose myself
somewhere
for a moment,
and then return…
__________
“Quiet Nights of Quiet Stars”
__________
“What Dreams May Come”
__________
“TODAY IS THE FIRST DAY OF YOUR NEW REALITY”
__________
The Moon, the Palm Trees, and the Endless Blue Sky
 
Above me
like a
pleasant dream,
like shelter
from the storm
and the
fury
this life
brings down
on us
like a
sledgehammer,
the moon, the palm trees,
and the endless blue sky
I stare at the
daytime moon
watching me
like a pale
glowing eye
as the palms
sing their
hissing song
and words open up
into blue obscurity
and limitless space
Riddles
Enigmas
Questions
Answers
all these things
are whispered to me
this sunny
summer afternoon
as the world
goes about its business
and I go about mine…
I lie here
alone
with
the moon, the palm trees,
and the endless blue sky…
*written at Cabrillo Beach, sometime in 2002
___________
On the 446 bus and there are two guys (Sikhs from India?) in turbans chattering
in their incomprehensible language.  Other passengers speaking Spanish and a
smattering of Chinese and three Euro tourists speaking what sounded like German.
I wish I knew more than one language.  Or maybe it would be easier if everyone
spoke English.
__________
Downtown LA at 8th and Broadway.  It is Saturday at 7pm.  I hear Christopher Cross
blaring from a storefront….”caught between the moon and New York City….”
_________
“In his dream, which he later forgot, he found himself in the town dump of his
childhood, sifting through a mountain of rubbish.”
Paul Auster
_________
Hieroglyphs
_________
Standing at a bus stop on Santa Monica Blvd. at 2am, waiting to go downtown.  Why?  As usual,
I don`t know.  However, since I am a sick puppy, I am excited, like a child waiting for a ride at
Disneyland.  My heart is racing and this pointless adventure will begin any minute now.  If I`m
alive tomorrow, maybe I`ll tell you about it…
_________
Night bus to nowhere….mostly Mexicans and homos.  Next to me is a HUGE black woman sleeping–
gray sweat shirt, blue sweat pants, hood up, eyes closed, snoring, with GIGANTIC thighs, thrice the
circumference of mine, easily the same size as my torso.  I`m not even drunk yet and I`m sorry to
admit that I think if she was mad at me, she could break me in half.  There`s a woman down the
aisle who is a dead ringer for Elvis…even her hair is the same.   She looks really mad…like a mad,
female Elvis.  Toward the lights of the Downtown night towers, we roll for no reason whatsoever,
at least in MY case.  What the fuck kind of freakshow will happen next?  I`m having a very difficult
time hiding the fact that I`m laughing hysterically.
The top of the Library Tower is purple and gold for the Lakers 3rd title win.
Downtown, middle of the fucking night.  The skyscrapers are a rainbow of lights and a monster
cockroach, 3 inches long just ran over my shoe.  Futuristic city, Blade Runner,desolate, terrifying,
fascinating.  The streets are mine.
Tower of Babel
Tower of Babble
__________
“Baudelaire: Il me semble que je serais toujours bien la ou je ne suis pas.
In other words; it seems to me that I will always be happy in the place where I am not.
Or, more bluntly; wherever I am is not the place where I am myself.  Or else, taking
the bull by the horns; Anywhere out of the world.”
Paul Auster
__________
So many different levels of insanity; some are so far gone, that they can no longer grasp reality
at all.  They just wander the streets broken down and dejected and hopeless, screaming gibberish
at the stars.  There are dirty ones, clean ones, funny ones, angry ones; the guy with the Charles
Manson beard in the ragged business suit with bare feet, the man in the gray trench coat who
wears a football helmet and mirrored sunglasses, the hairy guy in the Speedos, the lady who
just lies on the cement in a puddle of urine with her hands in her pants, the one with the tattered
plastic children`s Halloween mask, the one wrapped in plastic and aluminum foil….there is no
end to the sorry masses; what are their stories?  What happened to them?  So sad, so unfair…
__________
I simply don`t understand these fucking people who study the menus intently at fast-food restaurants.
It is not a gourmet French bistro!  It is stinking McDonald`s!  What are you stupid?!?  I know the
whole menu by heart as if I`ve worked here for years!  Big Mac, Quarter Pounder with Cheese,
Chicken McNuggets…..Cheezus Christ, man!  Taco Bell has tacos and burritos, McD`s has burgers
and chicken….HOW HARD IS IT?!!?
__________
“Writing is a form of therapy; sometimes I wonder how all those who do not write, compose or paint
can manage to escape the madness, the melancholia, the panic which is inherent in the human
situation.”
Graham Greene
I know how……………….TELEVISION
__________
Death Song
SIMULACRUM
“The Music of Chance”
_________
LA
“The car ran powerful, smooth and fast beneath him, performing its afternoon jaunt over the incredible
distances of which the city was composed; from time to time, had he looked, he could have seen the
city in the bright soft vague hazy sunlight, random, scattered about the arid earth like so many colored
scraps of paper blown without order, with its curious air of being rootless.”
William Faulkner
“Golden Land”
_________
So, once again, I must just radiate FREAK VIBES.  This stony looking Italian-looking white boy with
a Jewfro named Tony started yapping at me on the bus.  He was actually pretty cool though.  He didn`t
ask for money or anything and he seemed quite intelligent.  He was from Brooklyn.  All the strangers
always talk to me but I suppose it does make things interesting…
_________
“Maybe I`m amazed…”
_________
“I used to believe in things when I was a kid too…”
Homer Simpson
_________
Cheesy pick-up lines from random movies….
” `Did it hurt?`
girl  ` did what hurt?`
  ` when you fell from heaven, girl…` “
*  *  *
” You are one nice, cool glass of water and, baby, I`m telling ya, I`m thirsty…”
_________
AND THE DAY WILL COME WHEN
I WILL STRIKE LIKE A FLASH OF LIGHTNING…
_________
“The Night Torn Mad With Footsteps”
Bukowski
_________
6/19/02
The day I finally got hired for a restaurant job again and moved back into responsible
working adult society again.  It`s too bad, really, but it had to be done sooner or later.
I just realized that I haven`t worked a steady job since July of 2001 when I got fired
from Red Lobster for multiple reasons; giving away free clam chowder to my tattooed,
hoodlum friends, insulting an asshole customer ( you should relax man, it`s just a fish
house ), and setting fire to one dollar tips in the kitchen from cheap motherfuckers.  All
I`ve done since was through Dragon Talent Agency….getting stupid day shoots for music
videos and a couple of advertisements and print ads, and production assistant work
with Jill.  I never write about all this because writing about work is so BORING.
________
A white pigeon with purple, blue and gold patterns;  a LAKER pigeon, a rare bird in a monstrous world…
________
For some reasons, dudes always walk up and ask me if I have rolling papers…
________
these hands
these hands…
so much pain
so much beauty
these hands
have been so far
have touched so many
textures
written so many words
taken so many photos
painted so many pictures
have fed their owner
have traveled
they`ve seen so much work
manual labor and
easy money
these hands
have gestured
waved
poked and prodded
they have punched faces
they have touched
so many
lovely women
with soft velvet skin
they have
felt love
and loss
they have clenched anger
in a closed fist
shaking at the clouds
in frustration
or joy
these hands
have reached for the sky
clawed at the earth
and grasped
the very essence of life
these hands have
grabbed for the sun
and the moon and
every star in
the heavens
and have caught
only dreams
and air
and emptiness…
_________
” `…nothing but dumb luck, motherfucker!`
Chinaski    `Yeah, but that counts too…`
`…misdirected animosity…`  “
“Barfly”
Charles Bukowski
(His birthday is on 8/16/20)
_________
I really wish I could reproduce my REALITY PIE CHART for you here
but alas, it is not to be….I haven`t seen it myself in 10 years and I was
laughing my ass off…
_________
“The Art of Hunger”
“Wall Writings”
Paul Auster
_________
UNEARTH
FRAGMENTS FROM COLD
________
I  just saw a duck in the middle of Venice Blvd.  I chased him to the side of the road
and told him to go back to the canals.  A guy caught me talking to the duck and gave
me a weird look.  He thinks I am crazy.  And I am….so fuck that guy.  I will talk to the
ducks any goddamned time I feel like it.  It is the Art of Solitude and they are much
more likable than most people, the ducks are,  with their little quacking responses….
________
“Not because of victories
I sing,
having none,
but for the common sunshine,
the breeze,
the largeness of the spring.
Not for victory
but for the day`s work done
as well as I was able;
not for a seat upon the dais
but at the common table…”
Charles Reznikoff
_________
“Truth is stranger than fiction.”
Paul Auster
_________
good titles which I will use later:
FUEL
THE SPACES BETWEEN THE LINES
THE SILENCE AT THE CENTER
_________
“This smoky winter morning–
do not despise the green jewel among the twigs
because it is a traffic light.
Feast, you who cross the bridge
this cold twilight
on these honeycombs of light
the buildings of Manhattan
Rails in the subway,
what did you know of happiness
when you were ore in the earth;
now the electric lights shine upon you.”
Charles Reznikoff
(it is almost as if somewhere in my mind I KNEW that I would
be going to New York a year or two later;  but at this time, it was
the furthest thing from my mind.)
_________
Technicolor Polychromatic Wasteland
 
Technicolor polychromatic wasteland
a rainbow swath of destruction
gouged
through a valley of emptiness
more barren
than the desert
that once existed here
We trudge though
each day
isolated in our shells
talking on cells
driving down endless boulevards
that go nowhere
but to the edge of the continent
the end of the world
This city by the sea
watches the burning sun
drop from the sky
and sink into the ocean
leaving us
in darkness
our only lights
the neon beacons
of advertising
_________
“I don`t even know where I`m going.”
“That`s the best place to get some place you`ve never been…”
_________
“With Bukowski, the votes are still coming in.  There seems to be no middle ground–people seem
either to love him or hate him.  Tales of his own life and doings are as wild and weird as the stories
he writes.  In a sense, Bukowski is a legend in his time…a madman, a recluse, a lover…tender,
vicious…never the same…these are the exceptional stories that come pounding out of his violent
and depraved life–horrible and holy, you cannot read them and ever come away the same again.”
_________
“She was sweeter than a December suntan and 6 white horses running over a low green hill.”
Charles Bukowski
______________________________________
“You`re a sick man.  I`ve made a very close study of you.  You know, when I`m not jacking off or stoned,
I`m reading books, all kinds of books.  You are demented, my friend.”
“Great Poets Die in Steaming Pots of Shit”
“He smoked a sugar-sweet Mexican cigarette.  Mexican cigarettes burned differently–they burned HOT
as if they were alive.”
“Meanwhile, I write about myself and drink too much.  But you know that.”
We Will Taste the Islands and the Sea
 
I know that some night
in some bedroom soon
my fingers will rift
through soft clean hair
songs such as no radio plays
all sadness
grinning into flow…”
“Christ should have laughed on the cross,
it would have petrified his killers.”
“everywhere I see those who
crave nothing but food, shelter,
and clothing; they concentrate on that,
dreamlessly.
I do not understand why these people do not vanish.
I do not understand why these people do not expire,
why the clouds
do not murder them…”
“My problem, like most, is artistic
preciousness.  I exist,
full of french fries and glory
and then I look around,
see the Art form, pop into it
and tell them how fine I am
and what I think.  This is
the same tiresomeness that has
almost destroyed Art for centuries.
I made a record once of myself
reading my poems to a lion at the zoo.
He really ROARED, as if he were
in pain.  All the poets play
this record and laugh when
they get drunk.”
“I feel gypped by dunces
as if reality were the property
of little men
with luck and a headstart,
as I sit in the cold
wondering about purple flowers
along a fence
while the rest of them stack gold
and Cadillacs and ladyfriends,
I wonder about palm leaves
and gravestones
and the preciousness of
cocoon-like sleep,
not wanting the game,
not wanting machineguns
and towers and timeclocks,
not wanting, not wanting,
and I judge the purple flowers
better off than I.
I only want the sun
I want the sky
to burn me more and more
burn me out;
I go toward it
not wanting it
getting it
getting it
as the cat stretches
yawns
and rolls over into
another dream”
“The dark is empty;
most of our heroes
have been wrong.”
“Lay down,
lay down and wait like
an animal”
“She`s a very old woman and writes the same type of poems.  Wrote me a letter about the birds chirping
outside her window, all was peace, men like me who drink too much and gamble, oh talented but lost.
I saw a bird when I was driving home from the track the other day.  It was in the mouth of a cat crouched
down in the asphalt street, the clouds overhead, the sunset, love and God overhead, and it saw my car
and rose, cat rose insane, stiff back like mad love depravity, and it walked toward the curb, and I saw the
bird, a large gray, flip broken wings, wings large and out, dipped, feathers spread, still alive, cat fanged;
nobody saying anything, signals changing, my motor running, and the wings the wings in my mind and the
teeth, gray bird–Scimitar and song, yes, indeed, Shit…”
“I`m gonna try to buy a shack somewhere and just give everything up.  Just be a dirty old man waiting to die.
I`m sick of 8 hour faces and laughter and babble, Dodger talk, pussy talk, zero talk.  A roof, no rent.  That`s
my aim.  Pick up enough washing dishes 3 times a week or pimping.  Lord, I`m sick of it all.  And poetry
too.  No wonder Van Gogh blasted his head off.  Crows and sunlight.  Idle zero.  Eating your guts like an
animal inside, letting U shit and fuck and blind your eyes, but nothing, a nothing–I couldn`t die stretched
in a blizzard cause I`m already dead.  So let Pound have it.  And Keats.  And Shelley.  and belly piss…
the mailman with his smirking white rejection envelopes, and all the grass growing and the cars going by
as if it all doesn`t matter.  Christ, I`m watching a guy water his lawn now.  His mind is as empty as a
department store flower bowl.  Water, water, make the grass grow green.  Great.  G R E A T.”
“I`ve read the immortal poems and come away dull.  I don`t know who`s at fault; maybe it`s the weather, but
I sense a lot of pretense and poesy footwork:  There seems to be one hell of a lot of frustration and fakery in
this poetry business, the forming of groups, soul-handshaking, I`ll print you if you print me, $, wouldn`t you
care to read before a small select group of homosexuals?  I am writing a poem, they seem to say, LOOK at
me!!  Poetry must be forgotten; we must get down to raw paint, splatter.  I think a man should be forced to
write in a roomful of skulls, bits of raw meat hanging, nibbled by fat slothy rats, the sockets musicless staring
into the wet ether-sogged, love-sogged, hate-sogged brain and forevermore the rockets and flares and chains
of history winging like bats, bat-flap and smoke and skulls ringing in the beer.  Yes.”
“Art can`t operate in crowds.
Art does not belong at parties,
nor does it belong at inauguration
speeches.”
“However, these poems are encouraging to any young (or old) writer to show that something almost can come
out of almost nothing.  It is simply buttoning a button right and knowing how to open a door.  It is easy as hell,
really, it is so easy that almost nobody can do it.”
“The night kept coming on in and there was nothing I could do.”
“Barney, when a man gets old enough, trapped enough, hungry enough, weary enough–he`ll suck dick, tit, eat shit
to stay alive; either that or suicide….the human race ain`t got it, man.  It`s a bad crowd.”
“through a ripped curtain a part of the worn moon leaps.  It is a perfectly good night.”
“In the morning I find them asleep, him and her, together asleep on that narrow couch hardly enough for one body
and their faces together and their bodies close and asleep, why be corny??? I only feel the tiny clutch at the throat,
the automatic transmission blues of loveliness, that somebody has it, that they don`t even hate me…that they even
wish me….what?  I walk out staunching and grieving and feeling sick and blue and bukowski, old, starlit sun, my
god, reaching into the final corner, the last midnight blast, cold Mr. C, big H, Mary Mary, clean as a bug on the wall,
the heat of December a brainweb across my everlasting spine, mercy like Kerouac`s dead baby sprawled across
Mexican railroad tracks in the everlasting July of suckoff tombs, I leave them in there, the genius and his love, both
better than I, but Meaning, itself, shitting, shifting, sanding down, until I maybe writing this down by myself, leaving
a few things out, (I have been threatened by various powerful forces for doing things that are only normal and gaga
gladful to do) and I get in my eleven-year-old car and now I have driven away
find myself here
and write you a little illegal story of
love
beyond myself…”
CHARLES BUKOWSKI
 
A couple of his LA addresses for you:
1623 N. Mariposa Ave
5126 DeLongpre Ave
_____________________________________________
3 black kids, about 17 years or so, walk up to me on the Venice
boardwalk.  “You gotta a big blob of sand on yo head.”
I laugh and reply, Thanks for telling me, man.  I`m sure I do, I`ve
been flopping around in the sand like a dead fish for hours.
_________
A Useless Poem
 
What a bunch
of bullshit
it all is
this art
this writing
this `poetry`—
If you pay attention
it`s all been said and done
before,
echoed
in endless different ways
Beauty is an illusion
ugliness can be beautiful
the world is seen and heard
a billion different ways
It`s pointless
all of it
What a load of crap
a useless
waste of paper
and trees
A bunch of clever
and amusing wordplay
Poetry
arranging vowels
consonants
adjectives
verbs
at your leisure
on a whim
for your convenience
or boredom
or misunderstandings
or insanity
Just wordplay
I say
nothing more
but somehow
in the end
it seems
it could be
MORE
than we expected…
________
Translucent skin
computer screen eyes
fingers move across
keyboard
like skeletal spiders
swiftly
computer microchip voicebox
metal swivel spine
senses tampered with
perhaps a
personality glitch
monotonous mood
programmed mind
I AM ROBOT
________
Hollywood Hills
always remember
that blessed silence
above
the storms of the city
below
I stand here
on the peak of the roof
I stand
staring out
through the brown haze
of the city sprawl
I stand here
talking to myself
and looking at my hometown
Los Angeles
and I`m wondering
what everybody else
is doing
at this moment
as I watch a butterfly
flit by in the golden sunbeams
while I blow bluish smoke rings
that hover and disappear
on the light breeze
A mockingbird chases
a squirrel across the roof
as the city just lies there
far below
burning in the sun
a mirage
What are they all doing
down there
in the heat
and smog
as I stand here
thinking of women
the world
sandwiches
cold beer
lives and dreams
all these things
while the trees grow
and the malls are built
and the people
live
work
die
and still I stand here
listening to
Brazilian music
laughing
to myself
quietly being insane
in my own unique way
and thinking, always thinking…
and then,
I stop thinking for a while
have that cold beer
and fall asleep in the sun
with the white noise
of the freeway
a waterfall
through my dreams…
6/30/02
__________
HOLD ON TO THE SPIRIT AS LONG AS YOU CAN
__________
I lose myself
in your eyes
beautiful
pale green
like a springtime meadow
filled with fragrant flowers
your scent calls to me
across the fields
a song
like wind in the grass
your silken hair
wild and untamed
In the sunshine
we melt together
in a quiet flow of light
and shadow
and the sky above us
shelters us in blue space
while your lips
are the sweetest
I`ve tasted
and we laugh
we laugh at everything
as it all passes by
in the endless parade
of madness
It all seems so pointless
as together
we drift
on puffy white clouds
of bliss
to somewhere
other than here…
__________
HEY, THAT`S NOT IN MY CONTRACT
__________
“Science has stolen most of our miracles”
__________
tabloid headline
“Satan Escapes From Hell”
__________
I can`t think of a place in LA that better represents COMMERCIALISM than Universal City Townwalk.
RELENTLESS MERCHANDISING assaults the eye on every front with subliminal messages and
vibrant colors from the minute you enter and IT DOESN`T LET UP….EVER.  And everyone is eating
it up.  I`m outta here.
__________
To be honest, it kind of scares me, to watch the clones shopping, mindlessly….
__________
Love the subway wind…
__________
“The long solitary space that surrounds me forever….”
__________
“Camera`s got them images
camera`s got them all
Nothing`s shocking…
showed me everybody
naked and disfigured
NOTHING`S SHOCKING…”
Jane`s Addiction
__________
Nothing beats watching the ducks at the Venice Beach canals (and I always get caught talking to them)
So much going on in Venice Beach on a sunny Sunday afternoon.  It makes one`s head spin……
roller disco, basketball, bikes, accidents, fights, laughter, weed, cops, women, skateboards,
more women, drum circles, Jimi Hendrix, sirens, food, music everywhere; I could go on for hours,
but you get the gist….
__________
“Life From the Lifeless
 
Spirits and illusions have died,
The naked mind lives
in the beauty of inanimate things.
Flowers wither, grass fades, trees wilt,
the forest is burnt;
the rock is not burnt.
The deer starve, the winter birds
die on their twigs, and lie
in the blue dawns in the snow.
Men suffer want and become
curiously ignoble; as prosperity
made them curiously vile.
But look how noble the world is,
the lonely-flowing waters, the
secret-keeping stones, the flowing sky.”
Robinson Jeffers
___________
“The storm-dances of gulls, the barking game of seals,
over and under the ocean…
Divinely superfluous beauty
rules the games, presides over destinies,
makes trees grow,  and hills tower, waves fall.
The incredible beauty of joy
stars with fire
the joining of lips
O, let our loves too be joined,
there is not a maiden
burns and thirsts for love
more than my blood for you,
by the shore of seals
while the wings
weave like a web in the air
Divinely superfluous beauty.”
Robinson Jeffers
__________
“Letter on the Road
 
Farewell, but you will be with me,
you will go within,
a drop of blood circulating in my veins,
or outside, a kiss that burns my face
or a belt of fire at my waist.
My sweet, accept the great love
that came out of my life
and that in you found no territory
like the explorer lost
in the isles of bread and honey.
Think no more, my love,
about the anguish
that went on between us
like a bolt of phosphorous
leaving us perhaps its burning.
I have a whole heart
with the share of blood that
you gave me
forever,
and I have my hands filled
with your naked being,
look at me,
look at me across the sea,
for I go radiant, look at me
across the night through which I sail,
and sea and night are
those eyes of yours.
I have not left you when I go away.
My love, I wait for you
in the harshest desert
and next to the flowering lemon tree,
in every place where there is life,
where spring is being born,
my love, I wait for you.
Your love is a closed flower
that constantly fills me with its aroma
and that opens suddenly within me
like a great star.
My love it is night.
The black water, the sleeping
world surround me.
Soon dawn will come
and meanwhile I write you
to tell you I love you.
I leave it with you as if I left
a handful of earth with seeds.
From our love lives will be born.
In our love they will drink water.
Perhaps a day will come
when a man and a woman,
like us,
will touch this love
and it will still have the strength
to burn the hands that touch it.
They will touch this fire
and the fire,
my sweet,
will say your beautiful name
and mine,
the name that only you knew,
because you alone upon the earth
know who I am, and because
nobody knew me like one,
like just one hand of yours,
because nobody
knew how or when
my heart was
burning.
Only
your great dark eyes knew,
your wide mouth,
your skin, your breasts,
your belly, your insides,
and your soul that I awoke
so that it would go on
singing until the end of life.
Farewell, love,
I am waiting for you.
And so
this letter ends
with no sadness;
my feet are firm upon the earth,
my hand writes this letter on the road,
and in the midst of life
I shall be always
beside the friend,
facing the enemy,
with your name on my mouth
and a kiss that never
broke away from yours.”
Pablo Neruda
_____________________
“Once there was a way
to get back homeward….
once there was a way
to get back home………”

THB3

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