Bukowski writes to the greats
All the while hoping in the back of his mind
That someone will similarly write to him
Which would make him too a great
And maybe it’s not in the back.
Here you go, Charles.
He writes love letters to Van Gogh, Bach, Haydn, and all these other names I don’t know
And can’t remember them without looking back in the book which fees like cheating
And Haydn I didn’t know until I read his name on bukowski’s page.
He writes them love letters that aren’t full of love at all.
And can you even call something published, bound and sold for the consumption of masses a letter?
A letter means intimacy.
It means using paper to put my thoughts in your head, your head specifically.
For it to be a letter I must think of you while I’m writing it
And you cannot write a letter to a general audience because for it to be a letter
You have to picture the reader’s response to every word you commit to.
The ones that will impress him
And the ones that will roll his eyes
The ones that you will write anyway.
And you must be able to see exactly what his eyes look like as they roll in his pretty head.
And boys can be pretty
And men especially can be pretty
Because pretty means delicate
And really what is more delicate than a man?
A man is held together by his need to not be delicate
And this doesn’t hold him together at all!
You knew that, Bukowski, but you didn’t know it the way I know it
And I can tell That
From the way you write about women.
And Bukowski was obsessed with death and he died and I wonder what it felt like when life finally left his body.
I wonder if after all of those words
It was kind of underwhelming.
We will never know because he can’t write a poem about it
And he will never know because after you die you don’t find things out and you don’t even know the things you knew before.
You don’t anything.
To die is to don’t.