the temporal ease….

you don’t know what it is driving in for a wash and
wax with nothing to do but light a cigarette and
stand in the sun….   no rent, no trouble…
hiding from the whores…

…here it comes, glistening black, you tip the man
50ยข, get in, yank up the ariel, adjust the side mirror,
start it, turn the radio classical, steer it out
into the streets…

open sun roof, take the slow lane, hangover lessening,
now sleepy in the sun… you’re there…

the parking lot attendants know you:   “hey, Champ,
how’s it going?”

inside, you open the Form, decide to have a fair day
with the runners…   already you’ve spotted two low-
price sucker bets in the first race that will not
win–that’s all you need, an edge…

“Hank…”

it’s somebody behind you, you turn, it’s your old
factory buddy, Spencer Bishop…

“hey, Spence…”

“hey, man, I hear you been fooling the people, I
hear you been going around to the universities and
giving lectures…”

“that’s right, my man…”

“what are you going to do when they find out?”

“I’ll go back…”

you go to your seat and watch them come out for the
post parage.
you could be painting, or in the botanical gardens…
the 6 looks good in the Form and in the flesh…
7/2 is not the world but it’s over a third.

you get up and move toward the windows.
the screenplay is finished, you’re into the 4th
novel, the poems keep arriving…   not much on
the short story but that’s waiting, fixing itself
up, that whore is getting ready.

“ten win six,” you say to the teller.

it’s the beginning of a most pleasant afternoon.

my next lecture will be upon
THE POSITIVE INFLUENCES
OF GAMBLING
AS A MEANS OF
DEFINING TOTALITY AS
SOMETHING THAT
CAN BE TOUCHED LIKE
A BOOK OF MATCHES OR
A SOUP SPOON.

yes, you think, going back to sit down,
it’s true.

Author
Charles Bukowski
Written
1980
Source
Original manuscript
This poem appeared in the following books: