The senseless, tragic rape of Charles Bukowski’s ghost by John Martin’s Black Sparrow Press

mjp

Keep my good eye on the beat
Moderator
Founding member
Over 5000 posts
So is there a movement or action committee to correct all the Martin-molested poems and post them in their original form here at this website? Or is that gonna be a violation of copyright?
It would be a violation of copyright.

Having said that, you may notice that Martin no longer edits the new collections from Ecco, Abel Debritto does. That is due to Linda Bukowski being made aware of the changes that we're talking about. She was unhappy to learn about it, and you won't ever see another collection edited by Martin.

Also, someone has taken it upon themselves to do collections based on the manuscripts. You can find links to those in the timeline. They're actually quite well done and they're also inexpensive, so you might want to check those out.
 

Brother Schenker

Founding member
Over 100 posts
Right on, MJP!

That is great news about Linda finding out and actually giving a damn and putting a stop to Martin's mentally ill bullshit actions. You were no doubt instrumental in sounding the alarm and hopefully it will lead eventually to new editions restored to their unmolested original contents. Thank you for making a stink about it. Rape was an appropriate word for what Martin did---I mean, really, if you think about it, he did the equivalent of a Cosby-Rape, y'know? Waiting until Buk was physically incapable of defending his body of work against Martin's heinous assaults...whatta fucken dick.

I will check out that link. Cheers.
 

mjp

Keep my good eye on the beat
Moderator
Founding member
Over 5000 posts
In all fairness, a few people here have brought up changes, it isn't just me, and we've been talking about them since 2006. We started doing side by side comparisons in 2010.

There's also this: http://bukowski.net/comparisons/ There are only 25 or so there, but there could be hundreds.
 

Pogue Mahone

Officials say drugs may have played a part
Over 1000 posts
From Howard Sounes, Locked in the Arms of a Crazy Life (pages 223-224):

The method of editing The Last Night of the Earth Poems was the same as with all the other books published by Black Sparrow. He gave John Martin carte blanche to choose what he wanted to publish. “He didn’t even know what I was going to put in and then he never went back to look at his early work so he didn’t what I left out. He didn’t care,” says John Martin…
 

yougetso

Over 100 posts
you may notice that Martin no longer edits the new collections from Ecco, Abel Debritto does. That is due to Linda Bukowski being made aware of the changes that we're talking about. She was unhappy to learn about it, and you won't ever see another collection edited by Martin.

Also, someone has taken it upon themselves to do collections based on the manuscripts. You can find links to those in the timeline. They're actually quite well done and they're also inexpensive, so you might want to check those out.
I step out for a smoke that lasts three months like that guy in Summer School who's zipper got stuck, I come back and holy cow! Real Change has happened when I was gone. Just when I thought good things only happen in fairy tales and Knut Hamsun novels.

You all are indeed fucking awesome.
 

Erik

If u don't know the poetry u don't know Bukowski
Founding member
Over 1000 posts
So I finally finished an article on John Martin’s unforgivably sloppy editing of Bukowski’s posthumous poetry collections. One national paper showed interest in the article, but didn’t take it in the end. So it finally ended up in the student mag for the department of literature at the University of Bergen. (http://prosopopeia.no/index.html) That’s actually a good thing. Many of Norway’s university teachers will read it and many of the students at that department as well, students that will end up working in the major publishing houses and high schools here in Norway. So anyway, I hope the article will make Bukowski readers in Norway wary of the butchered books.

In the article, I concentrate on being as objective as possible. I use the poem “Escape” as an example of JM’s sloppy editing. This poem was chosen because it appeared in Prism International, a mag that some readers in Norway may know and that is easy to check up.

Funny thing: One of the editors commenting on the article was named Jon Martin. That’s his first name. But still, kind of spooky. He also is a former student of mine (in high school). So now he got his revenge getting to correct/edit my writing. So it goes. ;-)

There are a lot of references to BUKOWSKI.NET in the article, so hopefully you might be getting some look ups from Norway in the weeks to come MJP.
I also give a cryptic hint to the bootlegs in the article. Those are beautiful books!

If anyone wants to read the article in Norwegian just say the word and I’ll e-mail it to you or something like that…

PS: I can translate the title for you. It goes something like this: "Bukowski's posthumous poetry collections are not what you think they are."
 

BukFan Brad

Over 100 posts
I step out for a smoke that lasts three months like that guy in Summer School who's zipper got stuck, I come back and holy cow! Real Change has happened when I was gone. Just when I thought good things only happen in fairy tales and Knut Hamsun novels.

You all are indeed fucking awesome.
I'd
It would be a violation of copyright.

Having said that, you may notice that Martin no longer edits the new collections from Ecco, Abel Debritto does. That is due to Linda Bukowski being made aware of the changes that we're talking about. She was unhappy to learn about it, and you won't ever see another collection edited by Martin.

Also, someone has taken it upon themselves to do collections based on the manuscripts. You can find links to those in the timeline. They're actually quite well done and they're also inexpensive, so you might want to check those out.
Buk mentioned a magazine that used to publish his poems as he sent them (ie. with hash marks included where he had made mistakes). I wish poetry books written by him did this, as well as whatever the magazine was that did it.
 

Joseph K

Over 100 posts
I get quite a few views on my website pages about the Martin "editing". Most from Germany and the rest mainly from N. America and Europe. I think the word is getting out there, slowly. Abel's new books are also - delicately - suggesting the posthumous editions are not what they should be and as these enter libraries and circulation that will make clear what the problems have been.
 

mjp

Keep my good eye on the beat
Moderator
Founding member
Over 5000 posts
Most from Germany and the rest mainly from N. America and Europe.
That's where the Bukowski interest lies in general, so it's not surprising. Sometimes it seems like half of the Google+ and Twitter followers are from Spain or Turkey...
 

BukFan Brad

Over 100 posts
So I finally finished an article on John Martin’s unforgivably sloppy editing of Bukowski’s posthumous poetry collections.
When I first noticed these changes (first brought to my attention while listening to Bukowski reading his own work and following the text of that work in a Black Sparrow book I had) I've got a feeling what John Martin may have been trying to do is to 'tame' down the language in Bukowski's writing, removing the expletives, so that he could get Black Sparrow books onto reading lists for schools, colleges, etc. This is just a feeling of course and he didn't answer my question directly when I asked this of him so many years ago. He sent me some Black Sparrow merchandising instead (which was a kind thing to do but didn't really interest me so much as getting a straight answer to my question).
 

Pogue Mahone

Officials say drugs may have played a part
Over 1000 posts
There a couple of Bukowski items in an auction a few months back and this was once of them. (There were also some manuscripts I will send to MJP)

The letter is to Hank Malone (not Marvin).

Big Cred to the original Bukowski "scholars" from this forum who helped prevent what Bukowski feared...

letter2.jpg
 

Black Swan

Abord the Yorikke!
Over 1000 posts
Oh! He was not happy with the changes.
the additions nullify the flow......
The Scarlet is pretty much left alone but the rest of it is creamed. :mad:
 
A dim glimmer of hope could be the day, if ever, Library of America compiles Buk's poems like they recently did with Kerouac and publishes a 'collected poems' edition. A caring editor would then match the poems, not to a previous publication, but to the corrected typescript from the author.
 
I'll do my part. I'm going to take my new copy of Sifting Through the Madness for the Word, the Line, the Way and match it to the manuscripts and mark up my copy, make a video for Amazon review and physically show the extent of the changes so that people will be less inclined to buy it. Publishers notice that kind of thing ..
 

PhillyDave

“The essential doesn't change.” Beckett
Over 1000 posts
I'll do my part. I'm going to take my new copy of Sifting Through the Madness for the Word, the Line, the Way and match it to the manuscripts and mark up my copy, make a video for Amazon review and physically show the extent of the changes so that people will be less inclined to buy it. Publishers notice that kind of thing ..
This is something to chew on as well.

 
Top