"People come to my door—too many of them really—and knock to tell me Notes of a Dirty Old Man turns them on. A bum off the road brings in a gypsy and his wife and we talk . . . . drink half the night. A long distance operator from Newburgh, N.Y. sends me money. She wants me to give up drinking beer and to eat well. I hear from a madman who calls himself 'King Arthur' and lives on Vine Street in Hollywood and wants to help me write my column. A doctor comes to my door: 'I read your column and think I can help you. I used to be a psychiatrist.' I send him away . . ."
In what is widely hailed as the best of his many novels, Charles Bukowski details the long, lonely years of his own hardscrabble youth in the raw voice of alter ego Henry Chinaski. From a harrowingly cheerless childhood in Germany through acne-riddled high school years and his adolescent discoveries of alcohol, women, and the Los Angeles Public Library's collection of D. H. Lawrence, Ham on Rye offers a crude, brutal, and savagely funny portrait of an outcast's coming-of-age during the desperate days of the Great Depression.
Inspired by D.H. Lawrence, Chekhov and Hemingway, Bukowski's writing is passionate, extreme and has attracted a cult following, while his life was as weird and wild as the tales he wrote. This collection of short stories gives an insight into the dark, dangerous lowlife of Los Angeles that Bukowski inhabited.
From prostitutes to classical music, Bukowski ingeniously mixes high and low culture in his 'tales of ordinary madness'. These are angry yet tender, humorous and haunting portrayals of life in the underbelly of Los Angeles.
These mad immortal stories, now surfaced from the literary underground, have addicted legions of American readers, even though the high literary establishment continues to ignore them. In Europe, however (particularly in Germany, Italy, and France where he is published by the great publishing houses), he is critically recognized as one of America's greatest living realist writers.
Charles Bukowski was born in Andernach, Germany in 1920 and brought to America at the age of two. Eighteen or twenty books of prose and poetry, Bukowski, after publishing prose in Story and Portfolio, stopped writing for ten years. He arrived in the charity ward of the Los Angeles County General Hospital, hemorrhaging as a climax to a ten year drinking bout. Some say he didn't die. After leaving the hospital he got a typewriter and began writing again—this time, poetry. He later returned to prose and gained some fame with his column, Notes of a Dirty Old Man. After 14 years in the Post Office he resigned at age 50, he says, to keep from going insane. He now claims to be unemployable and eats typewriter ribbons.
To his legions of fans, Charles Bukowski was—and remains—the quintessential counterculture icon. A hard-drinking wild man of literature and a stubborn outsider to the poetry world, he wrote unflinchingly about booze, work, and women, in raw, street-tough poems whose truth has struck a chord with generations of readers.
Edited by John Martin, the legendary publisher of Black Sparrow Press and a close friend of Bukowski's, The Pleasures of the Damned is a selection of the best works from Bukowski's long poetic career, including the last of his never-before-collected poems. Celebrating the full range of the poet's extraordinary and surprising sensibility, and his uncompromising linguistic brilliance, these poems cover a rich lifetime of experiences and speak to Bukowski's “immense intelligence, the caring heart that saw through the sham of our pretenses and had pity on our human condition” (New York Quarterly). The Pleasures of the Damned is an astonishing poetic treasure trove, essential reading for both longtime fans and those just discovering this unique and legendary American voice.
Charles Bukowski was one of America's best-known writers abnd one of its most influential and imitated poets. Although he published over 45 books of poetry, hundreds of his poems were kept by him and his publisher for posthumous publication, This is the first collection of these unique poems, which Bukowski considered to be among his best work.
A book length collaboration between two underground legends, Charles Bukowski and Robert Crumb. Bukowski's last journals candidly and humorously reveal the events in the writer's life as death draws inexorably nearer, thereby illuminating our own lives and natures, and to give new meaning to what was once only familiar. Crumb has illustrated the text with 12 full-page drawings and a portrait of Bukowski.
Bukowski's unmistakable charisma - an ex-down-and-outer who wrote of booze and loneliness in maverick, confident free verse - made him one of the world's most popular poets long before he died in 1994. More than a decade later, death has not slowed his production. This collection is selected from an archive of verse that the author left to be published after his death. It includes poems of love and sex, advice to so-called losers (as he once was) to have confidence in themselves (as he did), gambling laments and humbling poems accepting his own imminent ultimate full stop.
One of Charles Bukowski's best, this beer-soaked, deliciously degenerate novel follows the wanderings of aspiring writer Henry Chinaski across World War II-era America. Deferred from military service, Chinaski travels from city to city, moving listlessly from one odd job to another, always needing money but never badly enough to keep a job. His day-to-day existence spirals into an endless litany of pathetic whores, sordid rooms, dreary embraces, and drunken brawls, as he makes his bitter, brilliant way from one drink to the next.
Charles Bukowski's posthumous legend continues to grow. Factotum is a masterfully vivid evocation of slow-paced, low-life urbanity and alcoholism, and an excellent introduction to the fictional world of Charles Bukowski.
Everyone's favorite Dirty Old Man returns with a new volume of uncollected work. Charles Bukowski (1920-1994), one of the most outrageous figures of twentieth-century American literature, was so prolific that many significant pieces never found their way into his books. Absence of the Hero contains much of his earliest fiction, unseen in decades, as well as a number of previously unpublished stories and essays. The classic Bukowskian obsessions are here: sex, booze, and gambling, along with trenchant analysis of what he calls "Playing and Being the Poet." Among the book's highlights are tales of his infamous public readings ("The Big Dope Reading," "I Just Write Poetry So I Can Go to Bed with Girls"); a review of his own first book; hilarious installments of his newspaper column, Notes of a Dirty Old Man, including meditations on neo-Nazis and driving in Los Angeles; and an uncharacteristic tale of getting lost in the Utah woods ("Bukowski Takes a Trip"). Yet the book also showcases the other Bukowski-an astute if offbeat literary critic. From his own "Manifesto" to his account of poetry in Los Angeles ("A Foreword to These Poets") to idiosyncratic evaluations of Allen Ginsberg, Robert Creeley, LeRoi Jones, and Louis Zukofsky, Absence of the Hero reveals the intellectual hidden beneath the gruff exterior.
Our second volume of his uncollected prose, Absence of the Hero is a major addition to the Bukowski canon, essential for fans, yet suitable for new readers as an introduction to the wide range of his work.
Unmasks the tough, street-smart persona of Charles Bukowski—America's "Ultimate Outsider"
Amazing letters filled with passionate, literary, and personal observation
Insights into the author of Tales of Ordinary Madness, Notes of a Dirty Old Man, and Run with the Hunted
Insights into Sheri Martinelli: the protege of Anais Nin, an accomplished painter, and the mistress of Ezra Pound Charels Bukowski's persona as the Dirty Old Man of American Literature is just that: a persona, a mask beneath which there was a man better read and more cultured than most people realize.
Sheri Martinelli was one of the favored few for whom Bukowski dropped the mask and engaged in serious discussion of literature and art, and for that reason the discovery and publication of his letters to her give us a more complete picture of this complicated man.
With his characteristic raw and minimalist style, Charles Bukowski takes us on a walk through his side of town in Hot Water Music. He gives us little vignettes of depravity and lasciviousness, bite sized pieces of what is both beautiful and grotesque.
The stories in Hot Water Music dash around the worst parts of town – a motel room stinking of sick, a decrepit apartment housing a perpetually arguing couple, a bar tended by a skeleton – and depict the darkest parts of human existence. Bukowski talks simply and profoundly about the underbelly of the working class without raising judgement.
In the way he writes about sex, relationships, writing, and inebriation, Bukowski sets the bar for irreverent art – his work inhabits the basest part of the mind and the most extreme absurdity of the everyday.
This second posthumous collection from Charles Bukowski takes readers deep into the raw, wild vein of writing that extends from the early 70s to the 1990s.
Mockingbird Wish Me Luck captures glimpses of Charles Bukowski's view on life through his poignant poetry: the pain, the hate, the love, and the beauty. He writes of lechery and pain while finding still being able to find its beauty.
The Bell Tolls for No One is a book of previously uncollected short fiction by everyone's favorite dirty old man, Charles Bukowski. Beginning with the illustrated, unpublished 1947 story, "A Kind, Understanding Face," continuing through his famous underground newspaper column, "Notes of a Dirty Old Man," and concluding with his hardboiled contributions to 1980s glossy adult magazines, The Bells Tolls for No One encompasses the entire range of Bukowski's talent as a short story writer, from straight-up genre stories to postmodern blurring of the line between fact and fiction. Designed not only for Bukowski fans, but also for readers new to his work, the book contains an informative introduction by editor David Stephen Calonne that provides historical context for these seemingly scandalous and chaotic tales, revealing the hidden hand of the master at the top of his form. Also included are several of Bukwoski's own illustrations.
Born in Andernach, Germany, and raised in Los Angeles, California, Charles Bukowski published his first story when he was twenty-four and began writing poetry at the age of thirty-five. His first book of poetry was published in 1959; he would eventually publish more than forty-five books of poetry and prose. He died of leukemia in San Pedro, California, on March 9, 1994.
David Stephen Calonne has edited three previous books of uncollected prose by Charles Bukowski for City Lights Publishers. He is the author of several books, including the critical study Charles Bukowski, and the editor of Charles Bukowski: Sunlight Here I Am/Interviews and Encounters 1963–1993.
“Genius could be the ability to say a profound thing in a simple way, or even to say a simple thing in a simpler way.”—Charles Bukowski
In The Mathematics of the Breath and the Way, Charles Bukowski considers the art of writing, and the art of living as writer. Bringing together a variety of previously uncollected stories, columns, reviews, introductions, and interviews, this book finds him approaching the dynamics of his chosen profession with cynical aplomb, deflating pretentions and tearing down idols armed with only a typewriter and a bottle of beer. Beginning with the title piece—a serious manifesto disguised as off-handed remarks en route to the racetrack—The Mathematics of the Breath and the Way runs through numerous tales following the author’s adventures at poetry readings, parties, film sets, and bars, and also features an unprecedented gathering of Bukowski’s singular literary criticism. From classic authors like Hemingway to underground legends like d.a. levy to his own stable of obscure favorites, Bukowski uses each occasion to expound on the larger issues around literary production. The book closes with a handful of interviews in which he discusses his writing practices and his influences, making this a perfect guide to the man behind the myth and the disciplined artist behind the boozing brawler.
Born in Andernach, Germany, and raised in Los Angeles, Charles Bukowski (1920–1994) is the author of over forty-five books of poetry and prose.
David Stephen Calonne has written several books and edited four previous volumes of uncollected Bukowski for City Lights.
Charles Bukowski examines cats and his childhood in You Get So Alone at Times, a book of poetry that reveals his tender side. He delves into his youth to analyze its repercussions.
Opening with the exotic Lady Death entering the gumshoe-writer's seedy office in pursuit of a writer named Celine, this novel demonstrates Bukowski's own brand of humour and realism, opening up a landscape of seamy Los Angeles.