“Poetry is what happens when nothing else can.”

I’m in the mood to share with you all a nonsensical amount of quotes that I have spent an (even more nonsensical) amount of time reading, tasting, drinking and consuming. In order of appearance.

CHARLES BUKOWSKI

“We’re all going to die, all of us, what a circus! That alone should make us love each other but it doesn’t. We are terrorized and flattened by trivialities, we are eaten up by nothing.”

“You have to die a few times before you can really
live.”

“If you’re losing your soul and you know it, then you’ve still got a soul left to lose”

“My dear,
Find what you love and let it kill you.
Let it drain you of your all. Let it cling onto your back and weigh you down into eventual nothingness.
Let it kill you and let it devour your remains.
For all things will kill you, both slowly and fastly, but it’s much better to be killed by a lover.”

“I felt like crying but nothing came out. it was just a sort of sad sickness, sick sad, when you can’t feel any worse. I think you know it. I think everybody knows it now and then. but I think I have known it pretty often, too often.”

“those who escape hell
however
never talk about
it
and nothing much
bothers them
after
that.”

“We are like roses that have never bothered to bloom when we should have bloomed and it is as if the sun has become disgusted with waiting”

“unless it comes out of
your soul like a rocket,
unless being still would
drive you to madness or
suicide or murder,
don’t do it.
unless the sun inside you is
burning your gut,
don’t do it.

when it is truly time,
and if you have been chosen,
it will do it by
itself and it will keep on doing it
until you die or it dies in you.

there is no other way.

and there never was.”

“great writers are indecent people
they live unfairly
saving the best part for paper.

good human beings save the world
so that bastards like me can keep creating art,
become immortal.
if you read this after I am dead
it means I made it.”

“nothing can save
you
except
writing.
it keeps the walls
from
failing.”

“writers are desperate people and when they stop being desperate they stop being writers.”

“people run from rain but
sit
in bathtubs full of
water.”

“He asked, “What makes a man a writer?” “Well,” I said, “it’s simple. You either get it down on paper, or jump off a bridge.”

“nobody can save you but yourself and you’re worth saving. it’s a war not easily won but if anything is worth winning then this is it.”

HUNTER S. THOMPSON

“I hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, violence, or insanity to anyone, but they’ve always worked for me.”

“Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming “Wow! What a Ride!”

“The Edge… There is no honest way to explain it because the only people who really know where it is are the ones who have gone over.”

“Some may never live, but the crazy never die.”

“If you’re going to be crazy, you have to get paid for it or else you’re going to be locked up.”

“1) Never trust a cop in a raincoat.
2) Beware of enthusiasm and of love, both are temporary and quick to sway.
3) If asked if you care about the world’s problems, look deep into the eyes of he who asks, he will never ask you again.
4) Never give your real name.
5) If ever asked to look at yourself, don’t look.
6) Never do anything the person standing in front of you can’t understand.
7) Never create anything, it will be misinterpreted, it will chain you and follow you for the rest of your life.”

“There was an awful suspicion in my mind that I’d finally gone over the hump, and the worst thing about it was that I didn’t feel tragic at all, but only weary, and sort of comfortably detached.”

ANNE SEXTON

“I am stuffing your mouth with your
promises and watching
you vomit them out upon my face.”

“I am alone here in my own mind.
There is no map
and there is no road.
It is one of a kind
just as yours is.”

“I like you; your eyes are full of language.”

“I am a collection of dismantled almosts.”

“Perhaps I am no one.
True, I have a body
and I cannot escape from it.
I would like to fly out of my head,
but that is out of the question.”

“Sometimes the soul takes pictures of things it has wished for, but never seen.”

“Suicide is, after all, the opposite of the poem.”

“Meanwhile in my head, I’m undergoing open-heart surgery.”

“Yet love enters my blood like an I.V.,
dripping in its little white moments.”

“Writers are such phonies: they sometimes have wise insights but they don’t live by them at all. That’s what writers are like…you think they know something, but usually they are just messes.”

“The beautiful feeling after writing a poem is on the whole better even than after sex, and that’s saying a lot.”

“Suicides have a special language.
Like carpenters they want to know which tools.
They never ask why build.”

and because I’m a creature of habit…

 

SYLVIA PLATH

“And by the way, everything in life is writable about if you have the outgoing guts to do it, and the imagination to improvise. The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.”

“I have the choice of being constantly active and happy or introspectively passive and sad. Or I can go mad by ricocheting in between.”

“Perhaps when we find ourselves wanting everything, it is because we are dangerously close to wanting nothing.”

“The silence depressed me. It wasn’t the silence of silence. It was my own silence.”

“Remember, remember, this is now, and now, and now. Live it, feel it, cling to it. I want to become acutely aware of all I’ve taken for granted.”

“Is there no way out of the mind?”

“Can you understand? Someone, somewhere, can you understand me a little, love me a little? For all my despair, for all my ideals, for all that – I love life. But it is hard, and I have so much – so very much to learn.”

“I desire the things that will destroy me in the end.”

“I have never found anybody who could stand to accept the daily demonstrative love I feel in me, and give back as good as I give.”

“Perhaps some day I’ll crawl back home, beaten, defeated. But not as long as I can make stories out of my heartbreak, beauty out of sorrow.”

“I love people. Everybody. I love them, I think, as a stamp collector loves his collection. Every story, every incident, every bit of conversation is raw material for me. My love’s not impersonal yet not wholly subjective either. I would like to be everyone, a cripple, a dying man, a whore, and then come back to write about my thoughts, my emotions, as that person. But I am not omniscient. I have to live my life, and it is the only one I’ll ever have. And you cannot regard your own life with objective curiosity all the time…”

“So many people are shut up tight inside themselves like boxes, yet they would open up, unfolding quite wonderfully, if only you were interested in them.”

“But when it came right down to it, the skin of my wrist looked so white and defensless that I couldn’t do it. It was as if what I wanted to kill wasn’t in that skin or the thin blue pulse that jumped under my thumb, but somewhere else, deeper, more secret, and a whole lot harder to get.”

“I didn’t want any flowers, I only wanted
to lie with my hands turned up and be utterly empty.
How free it is, you have no idea how free.”

“I write only because
There is a voice within me
That will not be still”

“Some things are hard to write about. After something happens to you, you go to write it down, and either you over dramatize it, or underplay it, exaggerate the wrong parts or ignore the important ones. At any rate, you never write it quite the way you want to.”

“I lean to you, numb as a fossil. Tell me I’m here.”

“The floor seemed wonderfully solid. It was comforting to know I had fallen and could fall no farther.”

“I am terrified by this dark thing
That sleeps in me;
All day I feel its soft, feathery turnings, its malignity.”

“I have taken a pill to kill
The thin
Papery feeling.”

“I know pretty much what I like and dislike; but please, don’t ask me who I am.”

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4 thoughts on ““Poetry is what happens when nothing else can.”

  1. writerontheradio says:

    I love Bukowski. I used to write Bukowski-esque Facebook statuses and my friend would keep mentioning Bukowski, who I didn’t know. So he sent me his book “Women,” and it changed my world. The man that I was madly in love with told me that girls who loved Bukowski turned him on, so of course, I gorged on Bukowski. I still love Bukowski, but not the same can be said about the other guy.

    Liked by 1 person

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