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The Genius of the Crowd by Charles Bukowski

There is enough treachery, hatred violence absurdity in the average
Human being to supply any given army on any given day

And the best at murder are those who preach against it
And the best at hate are those who preach love
And the best at war finally are those who preach peace

Those who preach god, need god
Those who preach peace do not have peace
Those who preach peace do not have love

Beware the preachers
Beware the knowers
Beware those who are always reading books
Beware those who either detest poverty
Or are proud of it
Beware those quick to praise
For they need praise in return
Beware those who are quick to censor
They are afraid of what they do not know
Beware those who seek constant crowds for
They are nothing alone
Beware the average man the average woman
Beware their love, their love is average
Seeks average

But there is genius in their hatred
There is enough genius in their hatred to kill you
To kill anybody
Not wanting solitude
Not understanding solitude
They will attempt to destroy anything
That differs from their own
Not being able to create art
They will not understand art
They will consider their failure as creators
Only as a failure of the world
Not being able to love fully
They will believe your love incomplete
And then they will hate you
And their hatred will be perfect

Like a shining diamond
Like a knife
Like a mountain
Like a tiger
Like hemlock

Their finest art

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • JiminAlaska May 30, 2019, 8:43 AM

    Meanwhile, way back before 1994….


  • rabbit tobacco May 30, 2019, 10:54 AM

    instead of: every mystic is a special kind of person, every person is a special kind of mystic.

  • Casey Klahn May 30, 2019, 4:33 PM

    The Lowlife Laureate. Indeed.

    “Men with newspaper brains.” I think I can use that.

  • Auntie Analogue May 30, 2019, 8:21 PM

    Charles Bukowski may be the world’s first acquired distaste.

  • Rob May 30, 2019, 9:03 PM

    Meanwhile, I am hanging out in Sedona, AZ for a couple of days. You can’t swing a dead cat without hitting some shop that advertises some kind of mystic experience. You can get your fortune told, your aura photographed, and your chakras realigned. My aunt and uncle moved here in 1972. I remember when this was mostly a town of golfers and ladies who played bridge. After harmonic convergence, everything has to have that mystical flavor or else. I love Oak Creek Canyon and the red rocks here, including the chapel, but it will probably be my last visit to town.

  • Skorpion May 30, 2019, 9:07 PM

    @Auntie Analogue: Personally, I could never him, his writings, or his general attitude. Along with Hunter S. Thompson and William S. Burroughs, he seems to be favored mostly by college-boy hipsters who think there’s something profound in the drug*-addled, misanthropic nihilism these three scribblers foisted on American letters. Interesting that all were also violent misandrists — Burroughs actually *shot his wife to death* in Mexico.

    *Alcohol is a drug too, kids — and one of the deadliest there is.

  • Skorpion May 30, 2019, 9:09 PM

    Above: “misandrist” = “misogynist”

  • Auntie Analogue May 30, 2019, 11:15 PM

    @ my dear Skorpion: My Dad had an apt saying about the Bukowskis of the world: “Poor guy suffers from rectaloptilitis – his optic nerve is crossed with his rectal nerve and that gives him a shitty outlook on life.”

  • Skorpion May 31, 2019, 9:39 AM

    @Auntie Analogue: Reminds me of the joke-diagnosis, “recto-cranial inversion.” In other words, one’s head is up one’s hindquarters.