The heart is a lonely hunter

Johannes

Founding member
Over 1000 posts
she died of alcoholism
wrapped in the blanket
of a deck chair
on an overseas
steamer

all her books of
terrified loneliness

all her books about
the cruelty
of the loveless lover

were all that was left
of her

as the strolling vacationer
discovered her body

notified the captain

and she was dispatched
somewhere else
upon the ship

as everything else
continued
as
she had written it.

https://bukowski.net/poems/carson_mccullers.php
 
I was just reading that Buk was influenced heavily by The Heart is a Lonely Hunter. I'll have to check it out. Anyone else read it? Do you see the influence? Care to comment on his influence/relationship with Carson McCullers? She was called the French Anais Nin?
 

Purple Stickpin

Over 5000 posts
The Heart is a Lonely Hunter was more or less required reading in High School English class back in my day. At one. If there's an influence, it's probably more in their philosophical approach to how their subject matter is presented. There's a certain I know it's pointless but damn it, I'm going to do it right anyway behind their writing that I find at least somewhat similar. I feel like Buk's writing style changed to a greater degree over time than did McCuller's, at least in his poems, which started out with longer phrases and more abstract imagery and eventually became a much more terse style probably most evident in You Get so Lonely...in 1986.

McCullers often wrote in shorter sentences, so stylistically, any similarities are most likely found in their novels. Despite the relatively terse sentences, I'd say Buk's writing was far more graphically blunt than was McCuller's, but she was fairly blunt in a more delicate way, if that makes any sense. If anything, I think Buk probably related to her as something of an outsider and a writer who didn't rely on any tricks; she just basically put it on the page.
 
Awesome. good to know. thank you for this perspective. I somehow missed it in my high school years. But this makes total sense.
 

Purple Stickpin

Over 5000 posts
Gah, I'm losing my touch (or mind, I suppose). Not sure what my point was in sentence #2 and, of course, the 1986 book was You Get So Alone at Times...
 

roni

Over 5000 posts
A few years ago they published a new German translation of "The Heart" and I started making the effort to read both translations the parallel way.
Was an interesting experience, since both translations had their excellent sides and both their weaks. None of them was a clear winner.
And I got tired of that comparison game around page 10.
 

Purple Stickpin

Over 5000 posts
There's another connection between McCullers and Buk (assuming there was one before this). Each had their first short story published in Story; McCullers in 1936 with Wunderkind and Buk in 1944 with Aftermath of a Lengthy Rejection Slip.
 

d gray

tried to do his best but could not
Founding member
Over 1000 posts
"ballad of the sad cafe" is really good. "who has seen the wind" is haunting.

reminding me to read "member of the wedding" and "reflections in a golden eye."
 
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