462-0614

by Charles Bukowski

I get many phonecalls now.
They are all alike.
"are you Charles Bukowski,
the writer?"
"yes," I tell them.
and they tell me
that they understand my
writing,
and some of them are writers
or want to be writers
and they have dull and
horrible jobs
and they can't face the room
the apartment
the walls
that night --
they want somebody to talk
to,
and they can't believe
that I can't help them
that I don't know the words.
they can't believe
that often now
I double up in my room
grab my gut
and say
"Jesus Jesus Jesus, not
again!"
they can't believe
that the loveless people
the streets
the loneliness
the walls
are mine too.
and when I hang up the phone
they think I have held back my
secret.

I don't write out of
knowledge.
when the phone rings
I too would like to hear words
that might ease
some of this.

that's why my number's
listed.

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