Candidate Middle Of Left-Right Center - San Francisco Review, 1961

Discussion in 'Unpublished and Uncollected' started by cirerita, May 6, 2006.

  1. I was manually tilling the ground with a hoe -I have a small vegetable garden in my plot- feeling very un-Bukowskian when all of a sudden I recalled an early B poem abouts "politics" and thought it would be nice to upload it here. So I'm sitting in front of the computer with my feet covered in dirt, my hands dusty and chapped and trying to find the link between hoeing the ground and Bukowski's apolitical stance. Go figure!

    Originally published in SAN FRANCISCO REVIEW v. 1 no. 8 (March 1961), p. 26. Revised & collected in A3). [I think A3 is Longshot Pomes...]

    Uncollected as of 2006.

    edit: I'm also drinking -and I'm no drinker, believe me- a Voll Dam Spanish beer. 7,2°, which is pretty strong for a beer. It tastes of stout. In fact it's called Double Stout Voll Dam. You know, drinking a bit helps to till the ground better :D

    LickTheStar and james like this.
  2. Gardening for me entails wandering around the back yard with a rake trailing behind me yelling BEER BREAK! every ten minutes...
  3. I continually amazed at Buk's prescience; and he hasn't let me down here, either. With the line "and I promise a national lottery" with the first U.S. one in 1964, and fist interstate lottery in 1985. We'll get there yet, Buk. He just knows how to call it right.

  4. I'm not sure of what the source is for the version cirerita posted (11+ years ago!), but here's the original version from my copy of the San Francisco Review #8, 1961. When I read his post, I got the impression that his version is from the San Francisco Review #8 (since it appears that he doesn't have Longshot Pomes), but the font and content are very different in my copy. For what it's worth (read into that however you like), it has some significant differences:

    Last edited: Aug 26, 2017
  5. Pogue Mahone

    Pogue Mahone Officials say drugs may have played a part Redwood Original

    Maybe it's just us nerds, but I love this stuff. Thanks, Southie...
  6. The version I posted was off Longshot Pomes... I had xeroxes at the time. I did not have a copy of the Dorbin biblio then, I think.
    Now, who made those changes?
    LickTheStar likes this.
  7. Well, that's the $64,000 question, isn't it? Obviously, this is a good five years before JM came into the picture and while the differences in the SFR #8 version are in one way similar to those we've attributed to him in the posthumous poetry, the differences are also quite different in another way from those we've attributed to him:
    1. The version in the SFR #8 has the more "offensive" language missing - this is not dissimilar to many of the JM edits; however, the SFR #8 version is the original, correct?
    2. There is no apparent addition of hackneyed cliches in the longer version from Longshot Pomes. In fact, the additions (if they truly are additions in contrast to re-adds; see my speculation below) are just the sort of lines that JM would normally remove. This is decidedly different from the edits done to the posthumous poems.
    This is purely speculation on my part, since I cannot find any information on the SFR online, but I suspect that while it wasn't very stodgy, it was still something of an academic journal. So perhaps the editors there removed some of the lines that appear in the version from Longshot Pomes or asked Buk to do so (and for Longshot Pomes, Buk simply submitted the version without those lines removed). I looked through the rest of SFR #8 and there does not appear to be a single expletive in the entire issue. But what's a bit odd is that while the version in Longshot Pomes is several lines longer than the version from SFR #8 (due to inclusion of the "objectionable" lines), the version from SFR #8 includes two lines about Lincoln and Jefferson that are not in the Longshot Pomes version. This suggests pretty strongly to me that Buk made the edits but I'm not quite sure why it does.
    zobraks likes this.
  8. This one seems obvious. SFR requested changes, Bukowski made them. We can spend 6 months trying to research their correspondence or whatever, but it would be a waste of time, because again, kind of obvious. And even if you did research it and find the editor of SFR made the changes, so what?

    Whenever I see discussion of who changed what lines in Bukowski's pre-Martin poetry I smell a red herring or a straw man or whatever kind of logical fallacy you want to hang on it. Like it's an attempted distraction from the real issue, which is Martin's destructive "editing." "Look: this happened before Martin, therefore Martin can't be blamed for what he did."

    Why there are differences between these two versions might be interesting to the 20 or 200 people who read this, but not to anyone else. Because no one else will ever read either version. On the other hand, there are hundreds of thousands of Martin's posthumous Bukowski books on people's shelves.

    I'm not trying to say there's no point in looking at these, there is - it's fun to do it. But it doesn't prove (or disprove) anything. If that's what anyone is trying to do. Which they may or may not not be. But I typed all of this anyway, so here it is.
  9. I wasn't attempting to suggest that this is an argument against what we know JM did. Rather, I thought I at least inferred fairly clearly that this editing has zero connection to the later edits despite any oddities associated with the editing. But, when one has a hypothesis, no matter how compelling, it's always best to consider any and all evidence to demonstrate that the hypothesis is still completely valid despite what some might view as evidence potentially to the contrary. In other words, consider everything or else the possible perception is that your hypothesis may be weakened.
  10. I wasn't referring to what you wrote as much as the "Now, who made those changes?" line, which I read as intentionally provocative. Because who made the changes isn't relevant to anything but The San Francisco Review.

    Everything you say about hypothesis is all well and good, but it's worth remembering that we're talking about art. If someone wants to say that John Martin ruined half of Bukowski's collected poetry, that is not a hypothesis, it's an observation of artistic work. Which is typically emotional and unscientific. Like art itself.

    That's a point I'll continue to make because I believe the destructive meddling has already been sufficiently "proven." Now we're talking about art, and what is or isn't an artist's genuine work.
    Purple Stickpin likes this.
  11. My question could be read as provocative, but it wasn't. I think it's safe to assume most poems published posthumously were not changed by Bukowski. I wasn't trying to imply otherwise. I was genuinely trying to figure out who changed this particular poem. And I don't think it was any of the editors involved. Not G. Hitchcock --who by the way disliked Bukowski, and said as much in print and interviews over the years, and that's why he never published Bukowski in Kayak-- nor R. Miller --who did like Bukowski's poetry. And I'm almost sure Larsen didn't change the poem when he published Longshot Pomes.
  12. Pogue Mahone

    Pogue Mahone Officials say drugs may have played a part Redwood Original

    We know that Bukowski re-worked his own poems back then. Probably because some publishers actually sent them back in a timely manner. To me, this time is very different than what happened later -- especially with prose.
  13. No, it isn't.
    It's a different but also "real" issue.

    Because the fact that this enormous volume of work that had been destroyed by JM (and is obviously more public than any small-press-appearance) is NOT a reason to ignore other changes in Bukowski's work, be it post- or prehumous.

    If our goal in the end is, to have the most reliable corpus of Bukowski's work possible, we have to go for other changes than Martin's just as well. They are worth a look and a few questions. And to care for them does Not make Martin's abuse any smaller. It just shows, that the field we have to work is wider and bigger than expected.
    Purple Stickpin likes this.
  14. I guess it's comparatively so minor that it seems unimportant to me. Though there's obviously value in correcting as much as possible.

Share This Page