trouble with spain

By Charles Bukowski 1920–1994 Charles Bukowski
I got in the shower
and burned my balls
last Wednesday.

met this painter called Spain,
no, he was a cartoonist,
well, I met him at a party
and everybody got mad at me
because I didn’t know who he was
or what he did.

he was rather a handsome guy
and I guess he was jealous because
I was so ugly.
they told me his name
and he was leaning against the wall
looking handsome, and I said:
hey, Spain, I like that name: Spain.
but I don’t like you. why don’t we step out
in the garden and I’ll kick the shit out of your
ass?

this made the hostess angry
and she walked over and rubbed his pecker
while I went to the crapper
and heaved.

but everybody's angry at me.
Bukowski, he can’t write, he’s had it.
washed-up. look at him drink.
he never used to come to parties.
now he comes to parties and drinks everything
up and insults real talent.
I used to admire him when he cut his wrists
and when he tried to kill himself with
gas. look at him now leering at that 19 year old
girl, and you know he
can’t get it up.

I not only burnt my balls in that shower
last Wednesday, I spun around to get out of the burning
water and burnt my bunghole
too.

"trouble with spain" by Charles Bukowski, from Burning in Water, Drowning in Flame: Selected Poems 1955-1973. Copyright © 1963, 1964, 1965, 1966, 1967, 1968, 1974 by Charles Bukowski. Used by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, www.harpercollins.com.

Source: Burning in Water Drowning in Flame: Selected Poems 1955-1973 (HarperCollins Publishers Inc, 1996)

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Poet Charles Bukowski 1920–1994

POET’S REGION U.S., Western

Subjects Living, Disappointment & Failure, Poetry & Poets, Humor & Satire, Growing Old, Arts & Sciences

Poetic Terms Free Verse, Metaphor

 Charles  Bukowski

Biography

Charles Bukowski was a prolific underground writer who used his his poetry and prose to depict the depravity of urban life and the downtrodden in American society. A cult hero, Bukowski relied on experience, emotion, and imagination in his work, using direct language and violent and sexual imagery. While some critics found his style offensive, others claimed that Bukowski satirized the machismo attitude through his routine use . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Living, Disappointment & Failure, Poetry & Poets, Humor & Satire, Growing Old, Arts & Sciences

POET’S REGION U.S., Western

Poetic Terms Free Verse, Metaphor

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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