Friday, February 14, 2014

A Little Bit of Light


When I think of all those who brought a bit of light and what they endured to do so, fighting their own demons along the way, I am most grateful to them. Their passing from this world was often as painful as the time spent here. I hope their hearts are at rest.

"Beasts Bounding Through Time"

Van Gogh writing his brother for paints
Hemingway testing his shotgun
Celine going broke as a doctor of medicine
the impossibility of being human
Villon expelled from Paris for being a thief
Faulkner drunk in the gutters of his town
the impossibility of being human
Burroughs killing his wife with a gun
Mailer stabbing his
the impossibility of being human
Maupassant going mad in a rowboat
Dostoevsky lined up against a wall to be shot
Crane off the back of a boat into a propeller
the impossibility
Sylvia with her head in the oven like a baked potato
Harry Crosby leaping into that Black Sun
Lorca murdered in the road by the Spanish troops
the impossibility
Artaud sitting on a madhouse bench
Chatterton drinking rat poison
Shakespeare a plagiarist
Beethoven with a horn stuck into his head against deafness
the impossibility  the impossibility
Nietzche gone totally mad
the impossibility of being human
all too human
this breathing
in and out
out and in
these punks
these cowards
these champions
these mad dogs of glory
moving this little bit of light toward
us
impossibly.


~ Charles Bukowski, from You Get So Alone at Times That It Just Makes
Sense



Painting: Landscape Under a Stormy Sky, Vincent van Gogh, 1888

22 comments:

  1. A perfect pairing of Bukowski and Van Gogh!

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    1. Souls who traveled the edge have always intrigued me ... thank you, Penny.

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  2. That is a most intriguing poem. And all those people who made a difference in our impossible world.

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    1. yes, and others, too ... some still with us working to bring some measure of light into our lives ...

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  3. Wonderful painting, that, I am not actually familiar with it - looks so like Van GOgh so assume it is. I like the poem but being a plagiarist is a touch of bathos compared with the fates of the others.

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    1. Yes, Jenny, it is. There's a note about it at the end of the post. I also thought that was an odd inclusion. Still, I do love the poem's view ...

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  4. Nice Van Gogh choice and the poem was something I will be giving some thoughts about. -- barbara

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    1. I've revisited it a few times ... thanks, Barbara.

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  5. Wow... this poem is BIG! I must have missed this one somehow.
    How we miss the light in this northern part of the world, taking things in a literal sense. But all those mentioned, like the rest of us have been in a dark place and no doubt longed for that light at the end of the tunnel.

    Hugs Jane

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    1. "Big," is an interesting way to describe it ... yes, it is ... and response is so true ... very true. Thank you, Jane. It's so nice seeing your name here again ... hope all is well .... hugs

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  6. We are all "beasts bounding through time" but some do this with so much more flair and purpose.

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    1. Yes, yes we are ... I love knowing that ...

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  7. I knew it was Buchowski as soon as I read "Sylvia with her head in the oven like a baked potato"! Somehow despite the grimness of all this I laughed out loud. Oh, what a morbid sense of humor, we some times have! A great poem, full of life, despite the morbid topic.

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    1. I can see that Bukowski humor, also. It's good to see this with the fullness of life including laughter at our own silly human selves.

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    2. I'm still laughing every time I think of this!

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    3. Humans ... we are all so very silly ... Bukowski knew this ...

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  8. Dear Teresa, to have written a poem like that defies the impossibility of being wholly human. Peace.

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  9. Mad dogs of glory indeed.
    So many names that could be added to this list. Folks who have blessed us with their madness and left us too soon.
    Thanks for sharing this.

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    1. I cannot imagine a world without them ... thanks, Bill.

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  10. VVG. Now there was somebody who understood light. :)

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    1. He certainly did ... I'm starting to understand it better all the time ... :) Thanks, Tony!

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