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The History Of One Tough Motherfucker Analysis



Author: poem of Charles Bukowski Type: poem Views: 11

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he came to the door one night wet thin beaten and


terrorized


a white cross-eyed tailless cat


I took him in and fed him and he stayed


grew to trust me until a friend drove up the driveway


and ran him over


I took what was left to a vet who said,"not much


chance...give him these pills...his backbone


is crushed, but is was crushed before and somehow


mended, if he lives he'll never walk, look at


these x-rays, he's been shot, look here, the pellets


are still there...also, he once had a tail, somebody


cut it off..."



I took the cat back, it was a hot summer, one of the


hottest in decades, I put him on the bathroom


floor, gave him water and pills, he wouldn't eat, he


wouldn't touch the water, I dipped my finger into it


and wet his mouth and I talked to him, I didn't go any-


where, I put in a lot of bathroom time and talked to


him and gently touched him and he looked back at


me with those pale blue crossed eyes and as the days went


by he made his first move


dragging himself forward by his front legs


(the rear ones wouldn't work)


he made it to the litter box


crawled over and in,


it was like the trumpet of possible victory


blowing in that bathroom and into the city, I


related to that cat-I'd had it bad, not that


bad but bad enough



one morning he got up, stood up, fell back down and


just looked at me.



"you can make it," I said to him.



he kept trying, getting up falling down, finally


he walked a few steps, he was like a drunk, the


rear legs just didn't want to do it and he fell again, rested,


then got up.



you know the rest: now he's better than ever, cross-eyed


almost toothless, but the grace is back, and that look in


his eyes never left...



and now sometimes I'm interviewed, they want to hear about


life and literature and I get drunk and hold up my cross-eyed,


shot, runover de-tailed cat and I say,"look, look


at this!"



but they don't understand, they say something like,"you


say you've been influenced by Celine?"



"no," I hold the cat up,"by what happens, by


things like this, by this, by this!"



I shake the cat, hold him up in


the smoky and drunken light, he's relaxed he knows...



it's then that the interviews end


although I am proud sometimes when I see the pictures


later and there I am and there is the cat and we are photo-


graphed together.



he too knows it's bullshit but that somehow it all helps.






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