Charles Bukowski was a great poet. He also wrote many autobiographical stories and was, really, the punk rock writer of his time.
I was introduced to his work by a friend. I was in the habit then of asking my friends about their favorite writers and books so I could read something new. I tended to stick to only one or two writers, which could get me stuck in a literary rut.
This friend’s favorite author was Bukowski, but he warned me that I needed the right introduction, so he recommended the short story The Most Beautiful Woman in Town. It was the perfect introduction to Bukowski because it is a warm yet heart wrenching story about a beautiful woman who tears at her beauty like a cancer that will not go away. I devoured his work immediately after.
Some people don’t “get” Buk. Regardless, the man has legions of fans to this day and several works translated all over the world. Women and Hollywood are my favorite Bukowski stories and Born Into This my favorite of his poems. It is also the title of a documentary about him that covers his childhood, his few stints at the Post Office, his relationships, forays into writing and, of course, his alcoholism. He was a master at his art, a Los Angelino through and through, a brilliant man with a lot of inner demons who found love in the end. So, I made a doll. lol