Charles Bukowski

(16 August 1920 – 9 March 1994 / Andernach)

Alone With Everybody

the flesh covers the bone
and they put a mind
in there and
sometimes a soul,
and the women break
vases against the walls
and the men drink too
and nobody finds the
but keep
crawling in and out
of beds.
flesh covers
the bone and the
flesh searches
for more than

there's no chance
at all:
we are all trapped
by a singular

nobody ever finds
the one.

the city dumps fill
the junkyards fill
the madhouses fill
the hospitals fill
the graveyards fill

nothing else

Anonymous submission.

Submitted: Thursday, January 01, 2004

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  • Veteran Poet - 4,179 Points Frank Avon (9/15/2014 10:29:00 PM)

    Wow! I never knew Bukowski was so pessimistic. I also didn't know he was quiet this good a poet. I'll read more. (Report) Reply

  • Veteran Poet - 4,555 Points * Sunprincess * (6/17/2014 8:37:00 PM)

    .........this is a great write.....the title explains the poem....alone with everybody....even in a room full of people you are alone....or on this planet.... you are still alone... (Report) Reply

  • Rookie - 411 Points Smoky Hoss (12/10/2013 12:14:00 PM)

    The relentless story of humanity; searchers we are born, seekers we die, never quite right, 'tween earth and sky. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie - 411 Points M. Warrens (12/8/2013 7:40:00 PM)

    I feel, that its just about longing for the perfect partner for you, you keep trying, hooking up, but each time you don't feel anything but lust (which is sometimes confused for love) for the person, and eventually lose interest and fight and or drink to deal with the fighting, and you continue to feel empty (Report) Reply

  • Veteran Poet - 2,906 Points S. Rose (7/14/2013 2:02:00 AM)

    I think that he's saying we want to connect fully with others, but it's impossible. We want to know everything about them, we want their eyes to tear our skin apart, and their words to crack our bones. But it's impossible to get to know someone completely, because flesh covers the bone. (Report) Reply

  • Veteran Poet - 2,906 Points Sam Aleks (3/17/2012 1:45:00 AM)

    few people seem to understand that Bukowski could write traditional poetry, he just chose not to. He spoke for the comman LA man, i think the people who live there would agree. (Report) Reply

  • Veteran Poet - 2,906 Points Assorted Thoughts (12/31/2011 8:08:00 PM)

    Nihilism just needed a positive/negative spin to be embraced by many
    Quite the feat of an intelligent man to pull off such task
    Nicely done (Report) Reply

  • Veteran Poet - 2,906 Points Christian Middleton (7/23/2010 12:26:00 PM)

    Celine Charcoal...i seriously doubt that your work is any better than Bukowski's, in fact, i doubt that you even come relatively close to scratching the surface of his level of skill. (Report) Reply

  • Veteran Poet - 2,906 Points Bowes (6/27/2010 7:58:00 PM)

    The outlook of the speaker is bleak in that he believes that we are destined to look for love or 'the one' to somehow make us feel full-or complete. He recognizes that we have a need for flesh-contact. The fact that we idealize love makes us search for it. We want to make a connection with someone, but we seem to have this idea that we will somehow be filled up by it. He points out the things that are inevitable to fill-just as it is inevitable that we look for 'the one'. He claims this doesn't exist-we are doomed to wander for the want of it-unfulfilled-but we still crave flesh. Need it even still. We should be able to connect with out feeling that we need to be filled-need 'the one'-and be okay. (Report) Reply

  • Veteran Poet - 2,906 Points James Faughner (6/15/2010 12:15:00 AM)

    Is it that easy to judge someone whom you've never met
    and say things about their work
    when they will never lose...
    40 plus years of Published work
    and a place in History? (Report) Reply

  • Veteran Poet - 2,906 Points Michael Speakman (1/12/2010 11:36:00 AM)

    I like to read this poet because the way he puts his words together.Not necessarily for his sentiment which can be bleak.Though I think there is great humour in his work too.. (Report) Reply

  • Veteran Poet - 2,906 Points Paul Cornell (1/6/2010 4:42:00 AM)

    a very dark & bleak portrayal of life but this is just a pesamistic view anyone who really feels this i recommend you read the art of happiness by dali lama - it literally changed my life. still a very good poem. if anyone gets time check some of mine out. ty (Report) Reply

  • Veteran Poet - 2,906 Points Poenee La (7/11/2008 4:55:00 PM)

    bukowski is a sad, bitter old man with a realism that is refreshing to us that live with dreamers, with that said his dreams were in the dark where dreams are meant to be had (Report) Reply

Read all 25 comments »

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