Throwing away the alarm clock my father always said, "early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise." It was lights out at 8 p.m. in our house and we were up at dawn to the smell of coffee, frying bacon and scrambled eggs. My father followed this general routine for a lifetime and died young, broke, and, I think, not too wise. Taking note, I rejected his advice and it became, for me, late to bed and late to rise. Now, I'm not saying I've conquered the world but I've avoided numberless early traffic jams, bypassed some common pitfalls and have met some strange, wonderful people one of whom was myself -- someone my father never knew.
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Charles Bukowski is one of America's best-known contemporary writers of poetry and prose and, many would claim, its most influential and imitated poet. He was born in Andernach, Germany to an American soldier father and a German mother in 1920, and brought to the United States at the age of three. He was raised in Los Angeles and lived there for fifty years. He published his first story in 1944 when he was twenty-four and began writing poetry at the age of thirty-five. He died in San Pedro, California on March 9, 1994 at the age of seventy-three, shortly after completing his last novel, Pulp (1994).
During his lifetime he published more than forty-five books of poetry and prose, including the novels Post Office (1971), Factotum (1975), Women (1978), Ham on Rye (1982), and Hollywood (1989). His most recent books are the posthumous collections What Matters Most Is How Well You Walk Through the Fire (1999), Open All Night: New Poems (2000), and Beerspit Night and Cursing: The Correspondence of Charles Bukowski & Sheri Martinelli, 1960-1967 (2001).
All of his books have now been published in translation in over a dozen languages and his worldwide popularity remains undiminished. In the years to come Black Sparrow will publish additional volumes of previously uncollected poetry and letters.From Booklist:
The second volume of poems Bukowski left unpublished when he died does not contain many fights, arguments with women, or eruptions at parties. Most of it seems to have been written very late; indeed, one of its most effective passages consists of poems about his hospitalization during treatment for terminal leukemia, and several other poems look toward death with a calmness that verges on nobility. Oh, he stayed true to his jaundiced, damned-if-you-do/damned-if-you-don't outlook, and he remained capable of f----th'-bastids rants against politics, business, and armed authorities. But he couldn't muster spontaneous ill-will as of old, and he actually let go of grudges. He became sympathetic of as well as to others. Read "the old girl" to appreciate this, for he relents and gives an irascible beggar he has spurned for years credit for endurance in the "self-same trap" we're all in; so doing, he rouses the impulse to feel for him, not just laugh with him. This is mellow Buk. Fancy that! Ray Olson
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Book Description Ecco, 2003. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110060577010
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Book Description Ecco, 2003. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 0060577010
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