Burning in Water, Drowning in Flame
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Burning in Water, Drowning in Flame

Charles Bukowski

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📖 eBook - ePub

Burning in Water, Drowning in Flame

Charles Bukowski

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Burning in Water, Drowning in Flame is poetry full of gambling, drinking and women. Charles Bukowski writes realistically about the seedy underbelly of life.

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Burning In Water Drowning In Flame

if you think I have gone crazy
try picking a flower from the garden of your
I had boils the size of tomatoes
all over me
they stuck a drill into me
down at the county hospital,
just as the sun went down
there was a man in a nearby ward
he’d start hollering for his friend Joe.
JOE! he’d holler, OH JOE! JOE! J O E!
Joe never came by.
I’ve never heard such mournful
Joe was probably working off a
piece of ass or
attempting to solve a crossword puzzle.
I’ve always said
if you want to find out who your friends are
go to a madhouse or
and if you want to find out where love is not
be a perpetual
I was very lucky with my boils
being drilled and tortured
against the backdrop of the Sierra Madre mountains
while that sun went down;
when that sun went down I knew what I would do
when I finally got that drill in my hands
like I have it
here they come
these guys
grey truck
radio playing
they are in a hurry
it’s quite exciting:
shirt open
bellies hanging out
they run out the trash bins
roll them out to the fork lift
and then the truck grinds it upward
with far too much sound…
they had to fill out application forms
to get these jobs
they are paying for homes and
drive late model cars
they get drunk on Saturday night
now in the Los Angeles sunshine
they run back and forth with their trash bins
all that trash goes somewhere
and they shout to each other
then they are all up in the truck
driving west toward the sea
none of them know
that I am alive
the elephants are caked with mud and tired
and the rhinos don’t move
the zebras are stupid dead stems
and the lions don’t roar
the lions don’t care
the vultures are overfed
the crocodiles don’t move
and there was a strange type of monkey,
I forget the name,
he was on a shelf up there, this male,
he topped the female and worked one off,
fell on his back and grinned,
and I said to my girlfriend,
let’s go, at last something’s happened.
back at my place we talked about it.
the zoo is a very sad place, I said,
taking my clothes off.
only those 2 monkeys seemed happy, she said,
getting out of her
did you see that look on the male monkey’s face?
I asked.
you look just like that afterwards, she
later in the mirror I saw
a strange type of monkey. and
wondered about the giraffes and the
rhinos, and the elephants, especially the
we’ll have to go to the zoo
I went to this place to see a movie
on tv
Alexander the Great,
and here come the armies
ta ta ta
horses, spears, knives, swords, shields,
men falling…
then turn to a roller derby—
here’s a girl strangling another,
then back to Alexander—
a guy jumps out and assassinates Alex’s father,
Alex kills the guy, Alex is king,
back to the roller derby—
a man is down across the track and another man rams his head
with his skates—
and here come the armies
they appear to be fighting in a cave, there’s smoke and
flame, swords,
men falling—
the Thunderbirds are behind,
one girl dives under another ...

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Citation styles for Burning in Water, Drowning in FlameHow to cite Burning in Water, Drowning in Flame for your reference list or bibliography: select your referencing style from the list below and hit 'copy' to generate a citation. If your style isn't in the list, you can start a free trial to access over 20 additional styles from the Perlego eReader.
APA 6 Citation
Bukowski, C. (2009). Burning in Water, Drowning in Flame ([edition unavailable]). HarperCollins. Retrieved from https://www.perlego.com/book/594846/burning-in-water-drowning-in-flame-pdf (Original work published 2009)
Chicago Citation
Bukowski, Charles. (2009) 2009. Burning in Water, Drowning in Flame. [Edition unavailable]. HarperCollins. https://www.perlego.com/book/594846/burning-in-water-drowning-in-flame-pdf.
Harvard Citation
Bukowski, C. (2009) Burning in Water, Drowning in Flame. [edition unavailable]. HarperCollins. Available at: https://www.perlego.com/book/594846/burning-in-water-drowning-in-flame-pdf (Accessed: 14 October 2022).
MLA 7 Citation
Bukowski, Charles. Burning in Water, Drowning in Flame. [edition unavailable]. HarperCollins, 2009. Web. 14 Oct. 2022.