a final word on no final words

near the end of the interview he leaned forward and
asked, “now is there any final word you’d like to give to
your audience?”

“no,” I answered, “no final world.”

I felt his disappointment.

“no final word?” he asked again.

“no,” I said.

he had wanted a nice closer, he had wanted me to save his ass,
he had wanted me to save the asses of my readers.
well, I had worked on saving my own ass but I felt that I
hadn’t really done so

but just to come up with some ditty of a line would have been
totally misleading ultra crap.

“well,” he recovered himself and said to me, “it’s been a real
pleasure to interview

“sure, baby,” I said.

then he motioned to the camera and the sound men that it was over
and they began packing their

“you fellows care for a drink?” I asked.

“no, thanks,” the interviewer spoke for everybody, they were
pulling plugs from the walls, folding equipment into
cases, it were as if I no longer

they had what they needed.

I stood with cigar and drink and watched them file out the door
and into the night.

then they were gone with their asses that need saving even
worse than mine.

Charles Bukowski
Original manuscript