Machineguns towers & Timeclocks (a poem by Charles Bukowski)

I feel gypped by dunces 
as if reality were the property 
of little men 
with luck and a headstart, 
and 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 palmleaves           
and gravestones           
and the preciousness of a           
cocoon-like sleep;          
to be a lizard would be           
bad enough      
to be scalding in the sun          
would be bad enough           
but not so bad         
as being built up to           
Man-size and Man-life           
and not wanting the           
game, not wanting          
machineguns and towers and           
timeclocks,           
not wanting a carwash          
a toothpull      
a wristwatch, cufflinks           
a pocket radio          
tweezers and cotton           
a cabinet full of iodine,           
not wanting cocktail parties           
a front lawn           
sing-togethers        
new shoes, Christmas presents           
life insurance, Newsweek           
162 baseball games          
a vacation in Bermuda.         
not wanting not wanting,          
and I judge the purple flowers        
better off than I         
the lizard better off           
the dark green hose       
the ever grass          
the trees the birds,         
the cats dreaming in the butter          
sun are          
better off than          
I, getting into this old coat now         
feeling for my cigarettes           
car keys           
a roadmap back,           
going out           
down the walk           
like a man to be executed         
walking toward it     
surely,         
going into it          
without guards           
driving toward it           
racing at it         
70 miles per hour,         
jockeying         
cussing          
dropping ashes        
deadly ashes of every           
deadly thing         
burning,          
the caterpillar knows less          
horror          
the armies of ants are          
braver           
the kiss of a snake           
less ravenous,           
I only want the sky           
to burn me more and more           
burn me out           
so that the sun begins at           
6 in the morning           
and goes past midnight           
like a drunken door always open,           
I drive toward it           
not wanting it           
getting it getting it          
as the cat stretches 
yawns 
and rolls over into          
another dream.   

 

(Charles Bukowski)

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2 thoughts on “Machineguns towers & Timeclocks (a poem by Charles Bukowski)

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