Charles Bukowski: Selected Poems Background

Charles Bukowski: Selected Poems Background

Charles Bukowski, an underground American poet, was born during 1920 and died during 1994. He was born in Germany and was brought to the United States at two-years-old. In addition to poetry, he wrote prose, novels, and short stories - all together consisting of over 40 books.

His poetry sheds light on atrocities of urban life and American culture. The dark, edgy style and tone of Bukowski's writing cultivates intense imagery of violence, sex, and drugs, among other things. Bukowski's raw and provocative poetic approach stems from the harsh realities of his own life, which started at a young age, involving parental beatings as well as tense interaction with peers.

As a young adult and college dropout, he experienced substantial rejection as he chased after a writing career, which fueled his alcoholism. Yet he didn't let his setbacks stop him from pursuing his writing dream; his first poetry book was published during 1959: Flower, Fist, and Bestial Wail.

After his death, posthumous works of his poetry were published, which carry the same style and tone of earlier poems. Some poem titles include "a 340 dollar horse and a hundred dollar whore" and "About My Very Tortured Friend, Peter."

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