Sunday, June 10, 2007

Same Kooks 

OK hipster drunks, put your books away, this is a pop quiz in every sense of the word.

Below are several sections of text. Half are from poet warrior Charles Bukowski, half are from the tongues of Craig Finn, songwriter for the Hold Steady. There will be drinking and low places and sorry relationships with questionable women. Please put the answers into the comments section below.

HS Buk

I had no money but the drinks kept arriving
to then I wasn't the bar clown but the bar fool
but at times a fool will find a greater fool to admire him,
and, it was a crowded place

moving pictures helped us get through to september.
they made a movie about me and you. it was half nude and half true.
it was a bloodsucking summer.
i spent half the time trying to get paid from our savior. swishing though the city center.

the nights went into days and the days went into nights
and we babbled on through, sometimes bedding down, badly.
through the drink, the uppers, the downers, I got myself to imagine things--
say, that this one was the golden girl of the golden heart
and the golden way of laughter and love and hope

and the money came off the streets out of hock shops out of nowhere
and all that mattered was the next bottle
and we drank and sang and fought
were in and out of drunk tanks, car crashes, hospitals

she said i won't be much for conversation if we go and do the rest of this.
she said i've never been much for conservation.
i kinda dig these awkward silences.

all your favorite books. they wouldn't seem so well written
if you were just a little bit more well read.
jack kerouac is dead. he drank himself to death.

and the rain came down thick and mean and steady
and you heard it banging against the roofs and into the ground
waterfalls of it came down

and then the spider from his dank hole nervous and exposed
the puff of body swelling hanging there
not really quite knowing, and then knowing

his elbow was a spiderweb. with five spiders trapped inside.
he said: the last guy didn't have to die.
but the first four looked so nice. i wanted five.

woke up in the 20s. there were flappers and fruits in white suits.
it was right before the crash.
we got thrashed throughout the 30s.
queuing up for soup in scabby sores.
and they sent us off to war.
we came back in the 40s.
there were wheelchairs, guns and tickertape.
we poured it on the floor and made love to the interstates.

It's never quite right, he said, the way people look,
the way the music sounds, the way the words are written.
It's never quite right, he said, all the things we are taught,
all the loves we chase, all the deaths we die, all the lives we live,
they are never quite right, they are hardly close to right,

we have everything and we have nothing
and some men do it in churches and some men do it by tearing butterflies in half
and some men do it in Palm Springs laying it into butterblondes with Cadillac souls
Cadillacs and butterflies

seeing lousy movies but only for the a/c.
skimpy little outfits and bad guys acting crazy.
that's how i know when you're lying. it looks just like overacting.
kids on the corner are cracking and caving in.

the scratches on my back
they formed into a choir
and belted out a chorus.

sometimes you've got to kill 4 or 5 thousand men before you somehow
get to believe that the sparrow is immortal,
money is piss and that you have been wasting your time.

They found him walking along the freeway all red in front
he had taken a rusty tin can and cut off his sexual machinery
as if to say,- see what you've done to me?
you might as well have the rest.

in tiny rented rooms I was struck by miracles
and even now after decades of listening I still am able to hear
a new work never heard before that is totally
bright, a fresh-blazing sun

she only pays attention to the prices of cigarettes.
she says she hopes they get cheaper...

we hung out pretty close with some questionable folks.
we got ideas from some dangerous thinkers. we put our mouths up to some dangerous drinks.
some nights we almost froze

our educational system tells us that we can all be big-ass winners
it hasn't told us about the gutters or the suicides.

we drank, drugged,
stayed in the center of the rug,
through sunset, sunrise,
played Scrabble for 8 or ten hours

i was at some party and she said she had to talk to me
and then she didn't say anything.
i can't believe i worried about hurting you while you were banging around the bars
trying to scratch up something new.

i see judas in the hard eyes of the boys working the corners.
i feel jesus in the clumsiness of young and awkward lovers.

I keep searching the streets for that
blood-wine battleship she drives
with a weak battery, and the doors
hanging from broken hinges.

hey william butler yeats.
the irish seemed wired last nite.
they tried to separate our girls from our guys.
they had cigarettes where there were supposed to be eyes.

the goldfish sing all night with guitars,
and the whores go down with the stars

There you go.

I don't need the poem names or song titles, just who wrote it: Bukowski or Hold Steady.
I'll be grading your answers with a bottle of good red.

Technical note: Not a word of the text was changed, although I did remove some capitalization that was very poem-y and would have given away the answer, and I took two phrases from one work and jammed 'em into the same entry because they were so damned good. Also, I grabbed all of this stuff off of the web (I did not retype all of them) so some exact phrasing may be suspect to sticklers.


Thanks alcohol

Comments: 0

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?