A Charles Bukowski Fan’s Poem

Charles Bukowski is one of my all time hero’s, his writing is amazing, funny, sad, serious, tragic, philosophical and always entertaining. I first read Mr Bukowski when I was 18 yeas old and ever since then his poems, stories and novels have engulfed my mind with hilarious scenarios , grotesque characters and poetic heartfelt moments that live long inside of me.

When I finally went to L.A. a few years ago I walked around the streets where Bukowski use to work, drink and write. I remember one hot afternoon I went to Bukowski’s grave, the sun was the colour of ripe blood orange, there was a smell of cars fumes and dust in the air as I read one of his poems. I then went off to catch a bus to San Francisco. On my trip, that afternoon stayed with me, as it does to this very day.

Below is a poem I wrote one morning after a few to many beers the night before. The poem has a slight influence of Bukowski that slowly soaks into the work.

12 Aspirins and a bottle of scotch.

Torrents of whiskey wash away the flavour of nicotine.

Smoke hangs in the air, men drink at a rum soaked bar.

The floor glows like liquid silver from spilt beer.

A match is lit, the flame moves like mercury.

Charlie Parker and Louis Armstrong play jazz throughout the bar.

A mature woman drinks an elegant martini, she plays with the

green olives as her blond hair dances to the groove.

A man in the corner chews on a cocktail stick, the aroma of sweet

perfume and musky cologne lingers in the air.

A saxophone is played in the toilet.

Drums beat to the beatniks.

A man in a purple hat flips a coin.

Heads or tails?

Heads or tails?


Shots of gin are swallowed, rivers of Smoky bourbon flow,

men with goatees and women with custard coloured berets kiss and flirt.

The cool dames and the crazy cats swing all night long.

Sitting in an old brown leather chair

Tom waits writes another

cool jazz song.

My name is Luke Ritta I am 26 years of age and I live in London, England. I have been writing poems, short stories and novels for the last 8 years and Charles Bukowski has always been one of my main inspirations when it comes to writing. He thoughts and theory’s about life will continues to encourage me through out my life.

Thank you Charles Bukowski!

Luke Ritta



  1. Richard says:

    Great poem title

  2. Hobbs says:

    Not very Bukowskiesque but,scenic.

  3. JAN ROBERTS says:

    Beautiful poem….so insightful, so descriptive. Thanks for sharing…….

  4. Luke Ritta says:

    I loved writing the poem with some blues music playing in my room and a bottle of beer by my side:)

  5. Jennie says:

    This is so beautiful, I love Charles Bukowski and this reminds me so much of his work.

  6. Bruce says:

    Bukowski was at odds with everything, especially himself.

  7. This is a poem inspired by Bukowski


    Discarded cigarette ends from last nights war
    Cushion my walk along Tobin St
    Empty beer bottles
    Dirty underwear and
    Somebody’s fast food dinner from yesterday
    The stench of stale beer, stale food, and urine dampness
    Evidence of Saturdays mayhem
    The blood of some poor bastard
    Stains the beautifully tiled street
    Stabbed or punched?
    Who knows?
    No doubt we’ll read it in the local tabloid
    On Monday
    Yeah come Monday
    As we wish our lives away
    In this Sunday Silence

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