Please help me if you can. It's about Bukowski's poetry theme and style.

fancyladd said:
well it seems that i've stirred something up around here a little...

As a somewhat scholar of both Dylan?s (I memorized every song he did, spanning from his first album up to Nashville Skyline; after which he went south for a good stretch into fundamentalism) and Buk?s (I?ve read all his novels, short story collections, books of poetry and most of his collections of letters, besides the interminable bios everyone has published). As mjp, I also made my living as a musician and singer for a decade and a half and now write my own twisted tales. So much for my credits:

So, I think it?s an apples and organs argument you?re into here, if you will.

The lyric writer is hampered by the necessity of the rhyming line; still, few have ever pulled it off as well as Dylan.

The hand-made blade of the child?s balloon
eclipses both the sun and moon
ya understand ya know too soon
there is no sense in trying

(Echos of Buk?s motto: Don?t Try?)

?Chimes of Freedom?; one of the most poetic anthems of a generation. As Dave Van Ronk said, ?He was saying it for all of us; what we felt, but couldn?t put into words.? But his prose poetry (someone else here noted ?Tarantula? as an example), he just didn?t pull it off, if you really give it a look. And I was the first to be amazed that his talent for lyric didn?t translate well into the field of straight-ahead poetry. Dylan?s autobio was quite entertaining with his narrative style exhibiting a unique twist towards infinite mixing of metaphors (a tech I, myself, me?like to employ, on occasions).

As far as I know, Buk never wrote any songs (with the possible exception of such things as: ?Made in the Shade (Happy New Year)? or what I like to call ?Popcorn Man?, could be representative of), but in the world of the poem, he is rarely equaled; never surpassed. I lean more towards his earlier work, when his seeming imitation of others? styles were incorporated, perhaps 1) to gain acceptance; (as much as people say he didn?t, I hear a true cry out to the world to be loved; no shit, read it), 2) he hadn?t found himself, yet.
With popularity, he then would, sometimes, actually write to ?stick-it? to the world that had taken so long to welcome him. Then, he would say any ridiculous thing that crossed his frontal lobe (like, that he thought that Dylan sucked (once complained Dylan was a ?whiner?; and, as Linda King said of discussions she and Buk had during their long relationship, they both whined constantly?it takes one...)). But, philosophically he, at his best, had a depth and compassion that equaled Dylan (?Medgar Evers?, ?Masters of War?, etc.), and subtle messages of humanity flow through to the reader; AND he got people who wouldn?t be caught dead reading (or writing) anything so wimpy as poetry (like me), reading poetry?that alone makes him unique in the annals of literature. In his poetry, he transcended technique; often, taken line-by-line, his work doesn?t seem to add-up to much, but when you reach the end, you are somehow left with a feeling that proves the whole greater than the sum. And that, is masterful writing.

He was also a master gameplayer, had his fun and he did his part to save humanity from itself (can?t be done; don?t hurt trying; we?re all headed for hell, anyway; who gives a shit?).

Dylan and Buk; two Giants?don?t fuck with them! So cut your blaspheming! (Just shitting you. And, yes, they were both ?gods? when the ?spirit? was upon them; and sometimes a little flaky when deserted by the Muse; so what?) Everybody?s just looking for somewhere to hide; and to have a little entertainment along the way.

Good day, sir,

SD
 
SamDusky said:
So, I think it?s an apples and organs argument you?re into here, if you will.
True enough Sam, and well rambled. Of course its stupid pitting Buk and Bob against each other. I like your pointing out that they actually have similarities.
SamDusky said:
The lyric writer is hampered by the necessity of the rhyming line; still, few have ever pulled it off as well as Dylan.

The hand-made blade of the child?s balloon
eclipses both the sun and moon
ya understand ya know too soon
there is no sense in trying

(Echos of Buk?s motto: Don?t Try?)
Still... lines like the above just don't do it for me. Especially the first one. I can see they're highly original, and well-crafted - and that they work well as a song. But, contrary to Buk's motto, these lines really really try to be poetic. The lines twist in your head and seem to imply that "something is happening here". Some folks like this, some don't. I don't like crossword puzzles either. Guess I'm an orange-man (orangutan?). I prefer Mr. Zimmerman when he doesn't pull tricks like this too much, but blends in some more comprehensible lines, thus inviting the more dimwitted and skeptical lot of us to the party... and Bob does this plenty. But Buk does it more. If you ask me...
Pass the oranges please.
 
The thing is, if you know the songs you can't read the lyrics objectively, as just words. Once that song occupies it's little spot in your brain, it's hard to separate out the lyric part of it. You can try, but you already know the rhythm and melody, so - to me anyway - it's impossible.

The lines SamDusky quotes are from a great song, and I can't read them without that song playing itself in my head.

This brings up other interesting questions though, because I think great poetry is all about rhythm.
 
Hello. Have to agree with mjp on this; but if you want academic context then Hoover's "Postmodern American Poetry" is a good start: it places B. alongside contemporaries. Hoover mentions B's anti-litetary credentials (significantly) & his spare, "horizontal" poetry. I know this is a contradiction but that's the point, I suppose. His anti-literary status has always been more popular in Europe (zone of Joyce, Kafka, Celine.... blafuckingbla). I believe that B. was also very insecure about mingling with academics - he found them boring. His short story, "Dr. Nazi" (in South Of No North), is Bukowski in capsule: pick out the sentence moods in that.
 
You may want to see from whom Buk borrowed stole etc...
Read Celine, Jeffers, Fante or listen to Mahler and Bach.
I realize the music references may seem odd and I confess I haven't tried to see if any of the writings metre matches a musics metre.
But (and I know I'm opening a can of worms and using a well worn out cliche) its obvious when reading some Kerouac that the metre is trying to imitiate a jazz (whatever that means) feel.
Best part of using musical references in your paper is that there really is no way to disagree or authenticate your argument so you can sound provactive even if this path of discussion could be a load of bull-and isn't font fodder the goal of most papers anyway?

The above said and perhaps a topic for a different thread, its always troubled me that Buk never appreciatted jazz. I understand not liking it but I don't understand his not acknowledging that jazz, especially in the 50's, was creating something new (Mingus comes to mind). Why not like both..no we are not regressing into that homophobe discussion again.
 
Who here still thinks that guy writing the paper is still checking out this forum? I enjoy reading here, you all really know what you're talking about...but that guy's long gone..too bad...what do you think he'll get on his paper...C-

I wish I could get as passionate about reading as you guys...I used to, but then the kids popped out and whooooosh, there goes all my time...no the only poetry I really get a chance to read was written by Dr. Seuss...but his stuff's not bad...Sam I am
 
The above said and perhaps a topic for a different thread, its always troubled me that Buk never appreciatted jazz. I understand not liking it but I don't understand his not acknowledging that jazz, especially in the 50's, was creating something new (Mingus comes to mind). Why not like both..no we are not regressing into that homophobe discussion again.

Did he have an opinion of jazz? I presume by what you say that he made a statement at one time that indicated either displeasure or the opposite with jazz. I think for as much as Buk detested academics and their overly-complicated "favorites lists" and the fact that he was not accepted personally or creatively he reviled just about anything and everything. His entire body of work encompasses his disgust for humanity, society, and just about everything else the human experience has to offer. I'm sure he could recognize talent, but from what I've read (from Bukowski and the users here) if he offered an opinion on creative work someone did he still didn't care any more for it than you would a dust mite. At worst, he probably envied and despised the artist or the art entirely. Rejection will do that to you.
 

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