The Pleasures of the Damned

The Pleasures of the Damned

Charles Bukowski John Martin / Dec 06, 2019

The Pleasures of the Damned To his legions of fans Charles Bukowski was and remains the quintessential counterculture icon A hard drinking wild man of literature and a stubborn outsider to the poetry world he wrote unflinching

  • Title: The Pleasures of the Damned
  • Author: Charles Bukowski John Martin
  • ISBN: 9780061228438
  • Page: 436
  • Format: Hardcover
  • To his legions of fans, Charles Bukowski was and remains the quintessential counterculture icon A hard drinking wild man of literature and a stubborn outsider to the poetry world, he wrote unflinchingly about booze, work, and women, in raw, street tough poems whose truth has struck a chord with generations of readers.Edited by John Martin, the legendary publisher of BlackTo his legions of fans, Charles Bukowski was and remains the quintessential counterculture icon A hard drinking wild man of literature and a stubborn outsider to the poetry world, he wrote unflinchingly about booze, work, and women, in raw, street tough poems whose truth has struck a chord with generations of readers.Edited by John Martin, the legendary publisher of Black Sparrow Press and a close friend of Bukowski s, The Pleasures of the Damned is a selection of the best works from Bukowski s long poetic career, including the last of his never before collected poems Celebrating the full range of the poet s extraordinary and surprising sensibility, and his uncompromising linguistic brilliance, these poems cover a rich lifetime of experiences and speak to Bukowski s immense intelligence, the caring heart that saw through the sham of our pretenses and had pity on our human condition New York Quarterly The Pleasures of the Damned is an astonishing poetic treasure trove, essential reading for both longtime fans and those just discovering this unique and legendary American voice.

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    About "Charles Bukowski John Martin"

      • Charles Bukowski John Martin

        Henry Charles Bukowski born as Heinrich Karl Bukowski was a German born American poet, novelist and short story writer His writing was influenced by the social, cultural and economic ambience of his home city of Los Angeles.It is marked by an emphasis on the ordinary lives of poor Americans, the act of writing, alcohol, relationships with women and the drudgery of work Bukowski wrote thousands of poems, hundreds of short stories and six novels, eventually publishing over sixty booksCharles Bukowski was the only child of an American soldier and a German mother At the age of three, he came with his family to the United States and grew up in Los Angeles He attended Los Angeles City College from 1939 to 1941, then left school and moved to New York City to become a writer His lack of publishing success at this time caused him to give up writing in 1946 and spurred a ten year stint of heavy drinking After he developed a bleeding ulcer, he decided to take up writing again He worked a wide range of jobs to support his writing, including dishwasher, truck driver and loader, mail carrier, guard, gas station attendant, stock boy, warehouse worker, shipping clerk, post office clerk, parking lot attendant, Red Cross orderly, and elevator operator He also worked in a dog biscuit factory, a slaughterhouse, a cake and cookie factory, and he hung posters in New York City subways.Bukowski published his first story when he was twenty four and began writing poetry at the age of thirty five His first book of poetry was published in 1959 he went on to publish than forty five books of poetry and prose, including Pulp 1994 , Screams from the Balcony 1993 , and The Last Night of the Earth Poems 1992.He died of leukemia in San Pedro on March 9, 1994.


    585 Comments

    1. I bought a book of Charles Bukowski's poems a couple days ago. I've read almost all of them. Some people think the guy's a hero, or an antihero, the quintessential drunk poet. He's really just a bitter, offensive guy. That isn't to say that he doesn't have a heart or that he's a bad person. He never put himself out to be better than he was. He was never on some high horse like most people I come across in literary circles. He was always honest. And this made his work great.Sometimes people watch [...]


    2. Its another end of another week and you are sitting alone at your favorite place overflowing with all those pretty faces.te night over the hillyou got a perfect table overlooking the city below.e city where, lights in those tall worldly buildings are going out one by one you order rounds of your favorite tennessee while a supremely talented, highly unknown, underrated and underpaid local band is playing 'Tangled Up In Blue' by Bob Dylan w you have started to feel lightest than you have ever felt [...]


    3. Just amazing! My favorite poem so far: invent yourself and then reinvent yourself,don't swim in the same sloughvent yourself and then reinvent yourselfandstay out of the clutches of mediocrityvent yourself and then reinvent yourself,change your tone and shape so often that they cannever categorize youinvigorate yourself andaccept what is but only on the terms that you have inventedand reinvented self-taughtd reinvent your life because you must;it is your life and its historyand the presentbelong [...]


    4. There is only one other author who can do the things to my head and heart that Bukowski does, and that is Raymond Carver. Both of these men have moved me in ways no other authors ever have. Maybe never will. I've heard all of the arguments against the man himself and by extension of that, his work. However, I disagree with all fo the critics on this front. The man is not a misogynist. He is a philogynist. Has always been. And anyone who reads his work, hears him speak, instead of pigeonholing th [...]


    5. I read nearly all of this on thetoilet.Hank would've approved.Really dig the mundane topics he oftenwrote about, like a poetic HarveyPekar.Some very clever phrases, and many not-so. I took issue with much of the formatting, though.Don't get me wrong, I don't mind a littleenjambment, when it's inservice to an established rhythm. But theawkwardand unmotivatedline breaks drove me up the friggin wall sometimes.All those widows andorphans.Pointlessly, and to excess.Someone told me his editor was resp [...]


    6. uhhhh yeah this is one of the best books of poetry I've read. if you've read some bukowski and you didn't like it i'd suggest picking this up(poetry), or ham on rye(novel), or hot water music(short stories) or the most beautiful woman in town & other stories(short stories) or south of no north(short stories) and i think you'll change your mind


    7. the bluebirdthere’s a bluebird in my heart that wants to get out but I'm too tough for him, I say, stay in there, I'm not going to let anybody see you. there's a bluebird in my heart that wants to get out but I pour whiskey on him and inhale cigarette smoke and the whores and the bartenders and the grocery clerks never know that he's in there. there's a bluebird in my heart that wants to get out but I'm too tough for him I say, stay down, do you want to mess me up? you want to screw up the wor [...]


    8. Let me start by saying I totally understand and agree with the hype surrounding Charles Bukowski even if most of said hype is coming from a bunch of adolescents on Tumblr who most likely don't have much life experience or at least don't have enough life experience to sympathize with Mister Bukowski's way of life (not that I am dictating who should or shouldn't read this as I think everyone should!)Bukowski was like the king of the down and outs, I admire this man so much. His poetry is easy to u [...]


    9. Oh Bukowski When I'm feeling down, crushed by this heartless world, I turn to you and your utter lack of sentimentality cheers me. You tell it like it is Mr. Bukowski. You leave blood, and tears, and shit streaks behind you You were a lonely man with a heart of glass and every word you wrote, you wrote for yourself. The ease of your words is so deceptive. I wish I had the courage to be as honest in my own humble scribbles. Highly recommended.


    10. My previous exposure to Charles Bukowski has been an isolated poem or two shared by friends. I loved those poems and thought I would enjoy more of his work. For the most part, I was disappointed. There were one or two poems new to me that I enjoyed, when the subject was social movements and perceptions. But mostly it was just too much bitter, sexist, white male obsessing over his bitter, sexist, white male problems.


    11. readwhat I've writtenthenforget itallThe poems of Bukowski in this book may be divided into two stages: From page 1 - 510 and from 511 - the end.For the last stage, Charles has reflected on death, his suffering, his illness, on God in an inclusive/ concentrated way . Bukowski has tried to say it all. I believe he did it.having beenborn into thisstrange lifewe must acceptthe wasted gamble of ourdaysand take some satisfaction inthe pleasure ofleaving it allbehindy not for meieve not for me.


    12. He was the world's greatest loserBut he never gave up -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- A marvelous read, this was not poetry, it was a dive-in Bukowski's world What a life he had!!



    13. As far as Charles Bukowski's work is concerned, you either enjoy his work or you don’t. As far as I'm concerned, any artist who can pen 54 books is worth looking into. Almost two years ago, a friend of mine read a poem of his aloud, with a roaring campfire in the background, during a summertime couple’s cocktail get-together--and I was hooked for life. I'd rather read books, listen to music or watch films from an artist who's consistently above-par than fixate on the tiny visionaries who kno [...]


    14. This book promises 'the best of the best of Bukowski', and it certainly doesn't disappoint - then again, at over 500 pages, there's a lot in there to choose from. However, there's some new stuff too - some of the material was first published here, and its covers contain a sizable amount of the great poet's work between his early, formative years and his final days, dying of leukemia after a lifetime of heavy drinking.And, for once, the editor is almost as qualified as Bukowski himself to bring t [...]


    15. Charles Bukowski, where to begin. I've read many of Bukowski's poems, It wasn't until I read an entire volume by him that I truly got the bitter dissatisfaction he has with most everything, except cigarettes which are a prominent or passive fixation in his poetry. Throughout The Pleasures of the Damned I followed Bukowski's everday life and observations of the world that he lives in. Bukowski lives his life; he drinks, he smokes, he has sex with ugly whores, he pays his rent, and he feels sorry [...]


    16. (view spoiler)[The MockingbirdHis Wife, The PainterOn The Sidewalk And In The SunThe Elephants of VietnamDark Night PoemThe Last Days of the Suicide KidTabby CatMetamorphosisA Poem Is A CityA Smile To RememberA Free 25-Page BookletThey, All of Them, KnowA Future CongressmanEulogyThe DrowningFooling MarieThe Young Man on The Bus Stop BenchFor They Had Things To SayHarbor Freeway SouthSchoolyards of ForeverIn the LobbySexSomething for the touts, the nuns, the grocery clerks and youBlue beads and b [...]


    17. he's seen better days I thoughtthat old boy, sittingon the bookshop shelf.a spent faceall wrinkled uplike a corduroy cap. a random flick reveals"The young lady from Canoga Park"- the first few linescoax me in.further flicks throw up"big time loser" and,"my friend William" - this some good shit. now he sitsbedside,a nightly dip providesthe perfect antidote to the ennui of matrimonialbliss.


    18. This book is really poorly put together. It's not chronological at all and mixes everything up. This is a crappy thing to do with Bukowski, because Bukowski's work and personality changed distinctly several times over his lifetime. To put together this way is frustrating to the the seasoned reader and misrepresents him to the beginning reader. The missing stars go to the editor, not Hank.


    19. I read this book because Bukowski is often quoted. I wanted to revel in his brilliance.I was sadly disappointed, his works are filled with anger, revulsion, spite and profanity; scattered with intermittent gems that are struggling to maintain their luster amidst all the despair.



    20. Charles my dear dear friend, you are a god. And thats it. There's no need to say anything else. I love you.


    21. Bukowski's poetry captures all aspects of the seedy underbelly of America. From, alcohol to prostitution Bukowski leaves no stone unturned in his poetry. He is often refereed to as the "dirty old man" of American poetry and after reading this selection of poetry I can see clearly as to why he is deemed so. I didn't care much for the poems that talked about sex or the frivolity of the American dream, but I really enjoyed the poems that touched upon subjects such as life and writing itself. Perhap [...]


    22. This was such a treat. Every single word was so heavy, so emphatic, yet so simple. The Pleasures of the Damned ist now my favourite Bukowski poetry collection. There's a little of everything in here, but perhaps the most moving poems were the ones at the very end of this book - in them he talks about life, specifically the end of one's life, the end of his life to be exact. A poem in this category that stood out to me was "My last winter":I see this final storm as nothing very serious in the sig [...]


    23. A future congressmanFooling MarieLike a Cherry seed in the ThroatDemocracyThe American Flag ShirtJust a few of my favorites from this collection.


    24. This was my introduction to Bukowski. I probably should have paced myself but I blazed through this collection of poems in a matter of a few days. What a sweet man.



    25. I had never read Bukowski before this collection, but it always felt as if I was missing out on something. I heard the name, I read quotes, but I didn’t have a book. So last year I bought The Pleasures of the Damned and have been reading the collection bit by bit. Sometimes one poem, other times several pages. Sometimes it was the language used that surprised me, but more often than not, it was the raw emotion captured on a piece of paper that touched a deep fiber within my soul. I can’t say [...]


    26. This collection of poems was my first experience of Bukowski's work, and after finishing the final poem today, I will definitely be coming back for more.I think there's a common misconception that poetry has to be flowery and flowing and romantic, with lots of long words and pretty little turns of phrase. Bukowski throws ideas like these about poetry in the dirt, and stomps all over them with heavy boots, flicking some cigarette ash on them for good measure. He is old, grumpy, unhappy, elated, d [...]


    27. Pleasures of the Damned is a mix of poems that touch on every emotion I have. I can relate to the author in ways most people wouldn't know. I grew up in a family of hard drinkers who speak of deep sadness and truth of the harsh world. Reading Pleasures of the Damned is an insight of what the truly sad people are thinking in their heads. Charles Bukowski writes an amazing book explaining exactly what he feels on thursday nights, when the only warmth he has to hold is a stale bottle of jack and a [...]


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