BUKOWSKI, Charles.

War All the Time.

Poems 1981-1984.

Santa Barbara: Black Sparrow Press, 1984 Stock Code: 120437

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First and limited edition, one of "126 numbered copies handbound in boards by Earle Gray, each with an original painting by Charles Bukowski" - this copy not numbered but inscribed "Presentation Copy" and signed by Bukowski. In addition, this copy is inscribed (in characteristic marker pen) on the blank facing the title page: "For Arthur Applebaum - I always feel like a bum around a gentleman like you. If the world had more like you we wouldn't be in such a bad fix. Sincerely, Charles Bukowski" and accompanied by an original sketch: Bukowski's Thurberesque self portrait thumbnail "little man with bottle". Arthur Applebaum was Bukowski's attorney and friend.

Mounted on the dedication leaf is an original painting by Bukowski: a head, rendered in an impasto of green, blue, black, red and yellow acrylic (signed "Buk" lower right). Bukowski produced many paintings, each unique, for the Black Sparrow special editions, "most of them painted on 6 x 9 inch paper as here with thick layers of acrylics, oil paint, watercolours, pastels, crayons, pens - whatever was at hand" (bukowski.net). This is a striking example that owes something to German Expressionism and Rouault's portraits of clowns and prostitutes.

At this time, and "with little to distract him, Bukowski worked harder than ever, writing on a sophisticated IBM Selectric typewriter, which his accountant said was tax deductible, and drinking expensive French wine. If there was Mozart on the radio, or 'The Bee' as he affectionately called Beethoven, he kept going into the early hours of the morning, producing a new book of short stories, Hot Water Music, and a large anthology of poems, War All The Time, the last Black Sparrow book he did original paintings for" (Howard Sounes, Charles Bukowski: Locked in the Arms of a Crazy Life, 1999, p. 204).

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Octavo. Patterned cloth spine with printed title label, grey boards with titles and decoration in blue, black, grey, orange, red and yellow, orange endpapers. With the original clear plastic dust jacket.


Title page printed in black, grey, red, orange, and blue; photographic portrait of Bukowski at end.


Gentle bump to the top edge of back cover, the acetate jacket very slightly creased in places, but an excellent copy.


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