respite

fighting with a woman
playing the horses
and drinking

sometimes I get too tired
to even feel bad

it’s then that
listening to the radio
or reading a newspaper
are soothing and gentle
things

the toilet looks kind
the bathtub looks kind
the faucets and the sink
look kind

I feel this way tonight

the sound of an airplane overhead
warms me
voices outside seem
humorous

now I am content and
unashamed

I watch my cigarette smoke
work up through the lampshade
and all the people have wronged
have forgiven me

the totals of the days and the years
are plausible

but I know that I will go mad
again–
disgusted
frenzied
sick

I need good nights like this.
you need them too

without them
no bridge would be walkable

love is not always directed at a
person.

ah!

see how easy it is!

Author
Charles Bukowski
Written
1977
Source
Original manuscript
This poem appeared in the following books: