June 11, 2009

I Made This Poem Up

by Randall Rogers

Bukowski met a guy
once who didn’t drink didn’t smoke

“What the hell do you do then?” he asked
as if one had to fill the time of day drinking
or like Mao said a day without reading at least sixty pages
is a day wasted - Buk’s corollary is a day
not filled with drinking is a day frittered away
my cousin was like Bukowski
beer for breakfast and all day and night long
always had a beer in his hand
graduated to adding a quart or so of brandy to
the mix,
and lasted about two and a half
years, before his liver went, then
all his organs started shutting down
and his heart stopped
and he croaked
at forty-eight

No, it’s like a doctor friend once told me, "better to smoke than drink if you are gonna do either"
he told me
"you can live with just one lung,"
he said
"but if the liver goes,
unless you get a transplant
you’re toast."
Cousin was toast,
burnt toast.
Kind of hope I don't
follow him in.


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