Buk's poem - ART (1 Viewer)

I would be interested in an analysis of "Art" myself...seems like you could go in a lot of directions with this.
actually, I Do think this could be a VERY interesting analyzis!
So, I start this thread with Only One modest request: whatever you claim in your analysis/interpretation - Give the reason for your thoughts!
 

Bukfan

"The law is wrong; I am right"
I see it like this: You start out writing something new or in a different style, but as time goes by it just becomes a new static form.
Actually, you could also reverse it: As the form wanes, the spirit appears. - If you get out of the static form, the spirit will appear and create something new...
 

mjp

Founding member
The poem Art really can't be analyzed or pinned down. The language is too open to different interpretations. What is "spirit"? What is "form"? The meaning (if Bukowski even intended it to have a meaning) depends on how you define those words.

When I say "if he intended it to have a meaning," I mean that sometimes the words in his poems are like music, arranged like notes to make you feel a certain way, rather than to make a point. This strikes me as one of those.

My take: as the spirit (as in the spirit of youth, excess spirit, distracting spirit) wanes, the form (as in something substantial and real, the opposite of youthful spirit bouncing off every wall) appears.













But what's really funny is we are analyzing it (and it's been analyzed before in older threads) but he probably typed it without giving it much thought at all, in about 30 seconds, then sent it off and forgot about it. ;)
 
Yes, that was my initial interpretation prior viewing "Born Into This". It was sudden for me, to envision an artist (or anybody really, I see an artist because of Buk) no longer capable of expressing him or herself in the way he/she intended it to be. Therefore sticking to a form (a conventional method) that has less value and substance than their intention.

It's just a loose interpretation, like mjp mentioned, the poem really can't be pinned down.

emku
 

Brother Schenker

Founding member
As the spirit wanes, the form appears.
Very Taoist.
Taositic.

The spirit would be exuberance, bursting with energy, willing to gamble, start from any point and see where it leads...gambol, moxie, pizazz...and as this wanes, there is a leaning towards safety & familiarity, taking less chances, the look becomes more important than the guts within, the form more important than the guts & spirit within it...

It happens to all artists who live past their unique artistic peak.

There's also a philosophical/cosmic/spiritual way of interpreting the poem.
Buk redd up on Taoism and Buddhism and other -isms as the result of living with Mrs. Buk. She might not have encouraged it but the books were around...and he ended up choosing a Buddhist ceremony.

I am your Philobabblist Extraordinaire.
 
Am a few beers into the night, so I thought I'd throw my two cents into this thread.

Bukowski appeals to me for the simple aspect that I like my art full of pain. Bukowski's work is, first and foremost to me, primarily about the pain of life. The drinking, the women, the wandering are all symptoms of his pain. His art is his release. My vicarious release.

Pain breaks down the spirit. Everyone succumbs. The pain will wear everyone down. Cause the spirit to wane.

This is when the art appears. It forms, or perhaps takes form, at the point at which the pain starts to overcome. When the spirit wanes. Art is the release of the pain. Spirit is the impediment of art. As long as one is capable of sustaining the spirit, no release is necessary, no (true) art is formed.

But again, I think of pain and art almost synonymously. Perhaps antonymously (is that a word?). Okay, maybe just in subtle opposition.

More likely, as mjp and others indicate, it means very little and he is laughing his ass off at us while drinking a warm beer in Hell...
 
As the spirit wanes= through depression, drunkeness, hard times. The form appears=the experience of life and the expression of such that creates art.
 

hoochmonkey9

Art should be its own hammer.
Reaper Crew
Moderator
Founding member
spiri=soul (or whatever word you want to use), form=the physical body.
without spirit/soul, etc, all we have is a useless empty form/body and that is all we see.
the difference between being alive and being dead.

this is just another interpretation, I don't think it's the correct one, though.
 

Erik

If u don't know the poetry u don't know Bukowski
Founding member
We've done this before haven't we?

My take: words like "spirit" and "wane" have a poetical, pretentious and "artsy" feel to them. Buk always made fun of the standard poesy phrases. So: when the artsy fartsy pretentiousness wanes - the real word gets nailed down...
 

the only good poet

One retreat after another without peace.
it's about the creative process, that's all. it takes a lot of frustration, dissatisfaction to write a few good poems. as the spirit wanes, the form appears.
 

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