Appears (in an edited form) in The Night Torn Mad With Footsteps

Charles Bukowski
back to the machinegun

I awaken about noon and go out to get the mail
in my old torn bathrobe.
I'm hungover
hair down in my eyes

tenderly stepping upon small rocks and branches

still afraid of pain behind my four day beard

as the young housewife next door shakes a rug
out of her window and sees me:
"hello, Hank!"

god damn, it's almost like being shot in the ass
with a .22

"hello," I say
gathering up my Visa card bill, my PENNYSAVER,
the Dept. of Water and Power

plus a notice from the Weed Abatement Department
giving me 32 days to clean up my act

I mince back again over the various debris
thinking, maybe I'll write tonight, they seem
to be closing in

there's only one way to handle those motherfuckers

the night harness races will have to wait.

©Linda Lee Bukowski - used with permission