Just stumbled over this one:
As you probably ascertained from things I've mentioned over at NSS, I used to edit a little 'zine out of San Jose,CA. for over 10 years called EAT POOP! Buk being a fave of mine, I early on published a poem that he had sent to a friend of mine that had never been published (for me a coup in itself). I then sent a copy of the ish of EP! to Hank to see what might transpire (Feb. 1992). I received the following letter & poem, which I shared with my readers & am now sharing here.
Thanks for your magazine. What more can I say? I get lots of magazines & letters & manuscripts & photos of women's bodies. I get threats. I get praise. I get dullness. I get garlands of self-pity. I get a mass & a mess of stuff. I can't respond to all of these. I can't smooth & soothe all of these. I can't flagellate them. There's not enough of me. I got toothaches, flat tires, the falling shit of darkness, etc., just like anybody else. Please understand, I am an isolationist but not a prick. Well, not always a prick
You asked for something. (did I forget to mention that above, er, oh - NÃ˜) It is a poem (enclosed) If you don't like it, it means your balls are tangled in your shorts & it's cutting off the blood supply to your brain. S.A.E. enclosed for your usage. & of course, if you do like the poem, it means that you are a fine fellow, acute, & riveted to the flow of the gods.
EAT POOP!, eh? Can you back that up? I don't use calendars, I just ask somebody,"Is it March or Mayhem?" There may be flies on some of you guys but there're vultures on me.
In search of the hero
I never met him, even in the alley. I make out the form that has battered me to the ground, but it's no good. It was nothing but a half-brained ape.
In print, for a while, it was Hemingway, then I noticed that his writing was writing itself, he was not writing it.
In drinking, it was nobody. I opened & closed the bar, others gave it a try but they came & left, they had neither the thirst nor the gamble nor the suicidal bent. I stayed on that stool for 5 years waiting for a drinking companion. Hundreds came & left. They died, quit, vanished. I ordered more drinks, then I left to drink in the rooms with the only companion I had met...
In sex. I began quite late & being fully rested I gave it a roaring bang, learning more from each & applying it in all its fullsome aspects, awakening in new bed after new bed & back in some old ones...looking out the window & seeing my car parked outside...& remembering that there was another to do that day & maybe another that night.
Dinners, lunches, wines, walks in the park, walks along the sea, sometimes meeting a brother, a son, an x-husband & once, a husband. I knew of nobody who was doing as many bodies as I & drinking as hard at the same time. I was doing it all & I was penniless & stupid & almost without reason. To return now & then to my tiny dirty court after long absences to find wild notes under my door & in my mailbox.
I couldn't handle them all & some became enraged, attacked my automobile, broke into the premises, destroyed everything, the female hurricanes from hell.
& to have the phones ringing throughout all time, curses, wails, hangups, re-rings, threats of love, threats of death, & if I took the phone off the hook...soon the sound of a racing motor, the screeching of brakes & a rock through the window.
3 times there were attempted murders against me. & I was old & ugly, worse than poor, often even without toilet paper & I was only giving the game half a try...
But, I mean, I knew of nobody like me around.
I was my own hero. Crazed, true.
I remember once after a rock crashed through my window & I heard the car roaring off, sex-worn
[To Maxwell Gaddis]
March 23, 1991 11:1 3 PM
I could be unappreciative and self-centered but a "cock-sucker," I ain't.
(See your last letter or your grandma's dirty underwear). But, I took a
second sighting on your babbling and figured, in manner or speech, you
were just coming on as a so-called tough to impress me.
I am not impressed. It's a dangerous word,
baby, that one, and if you use it against somebody standing in the same
room with you there is a good chance you are going to get your lights
turned out. So be careful. Unless you are a black belt man. Then still be
careful"”anybody can be had.
On your calendar and letter, I might have gotten them. I just didn't jump
through the hoop, lala. I get lots of calendars and letters, and manuscripts,
and photos of parts of women's bodies. I get threats, I get praise, I get
dullness, I get garlands of self-pity, I get a mass and a mess of stuff. I can't
respond to all these. I can't smooth and soothe all these, I can't flagellate
them. There's not enough of me. I get toothaches, flat tires, the falling shit
of darkness, etc., just like anybody else. Please understand, I am an isolationist
but not a prick. Well, not always a prick.
You asked for something. It is a poem (enclosed). If you don't like it it
means that your balls are tangled in your shorts and it's cutting off the
blood supply to your brain. S.E.A. enclosed for your usage. And, of course,
if you do like the poem it means that you are a fine fellow, acute, and riveted
to the flow of the gods.
The Nihilistic Review , eh?
Can you back that?
I don't use calendars. I just ask somebody, is this March or mayhem?
There may be flies on some of you guys but there's vultures on me.
[...] I wonder if the hero will ever show up.