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The Buk Shop

Longshot Pomes for Broke Players: Inscribed by Bukowski with Signed Original Drawing (1962)

Longshot Pomes for Broke Players: Inscribed by Bukowski with Signed Original Drawing (1962)

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Published in 1962 by 7 Poets Press out of New York, Longshot Pomes for Broke Players is one of Charles Bukowski’s most collectible books.

Making this copy even more collectable is that it’s an inscribed association copy with an original drawing signed by Charles Bukowski.

It is in Near Fine-minus condition with several small, light stains to the covers and interior pages. I have done my best to capture them in the photographs. Please Note: I only took one picture of the stains on the interior pages, the largest. That and another small stain are on the edges of about 10 pages of the book.

Excluding the LouJon Press books, Longshot is the most beautifully designed early chapbook. The covers are printed on thick, textured stock and the front features an iconic Bukowski drawing. The interior pages are made of high-quality paper and are held together by three heavy-duty staples.

This copy is inscribed to Jack and Ruth Hirschman with the date and time. Bukowski also added a detailed drawing of a vase with flowers, a typewriter, a bottle, and an ashtray with burning cigarette.

The inscription reads:

Charles Bukowski
7:35 p.m.

Jack Hirschman was a professor of English at the University of California, Los Angeles from 1959-1966. (Ray Manzarek was once a student.) He was also a fellow poet, painter and collagist who exhibited around Venice Beach. In the 1970s and 1980s, he is credited with keeping the poetry scene alive in Venice and was included in Bukowski’s Anthology of L.A. Poets in 1972. If there were a “Keep Venice Weird” t-shirt in the 1980s, Hirschman probably would have been on it.

Although Jack Hirschman did get a blurb in the Los Angeles Times to promote It Catches My Heart in Its Hands, Ruth Hirschman probably had a more influential role in Bukowski’s career – or at least his legacy. In a July 1, 1963, letter to Jon and Louise Webb (founders of LouJon Press), Bukowski wrote:

“I will send you a tape of a poetry reading of mine I made on my machine and which was broadcast over KPFK in August 1962. Of course, they deleted a lot of vulgarity, had to, so it is not quite the same thing I sent them. They asked me to come to their studios, which is like asking me to go to church with a hangover, so instead I mailed them what I had made in my room among the beercans, and they accepted it and played it over the air. Jack Hirschman's wife runs the literary and drama end of KPFK. Anyhow, when the thing finally came on over the radio ... at 11:15pm ... I was drunk and did not hear it, but somebody retaped it off the radio and I was able to hear it afterward.”

Bukowski’s earliest known recording, “Poetry of Charles Bukowski” is still available on CD from KPFK at a very reasonable price.

Longshot Pomes for Broke Players is considered to be Charles Bukowski’s second true chapbook. It was produced and edited by Carl Larsen, an early proponent of Bukowski’s work.

Carl Larsen published three magazines in the late 1950s and early 1960s. His first magazine was Existaria, published out of Hermosa Beach in Southern California. Bukowski appeared in Existaria No. 7 in 1957, only his 13th appearance in any literary magazine.

His second periodical was RongWrong. It was published quarterly for five issues in New York during the early 1960s. Bukowski appeared in Rong Wrong issues No.1, No. 2, and No. 4 between 1961 and 1962.

His final magazine was Brand X, which ran for 12 issues in 1962. Bukowski was featured in Brand X issues No. 1 and No. 5.

While he was still producing RongRong, 7 Poets Press started issuing chapbooks. Longshot Pomes for Broke Players was number 3 in the series.

The 26 Pomes include:

Bring Down The Beams - circa 1959
Candidate Middle Of Left-Right Center - circa 1961
Conversation In A Cheap Room - circa 1960
Death Wants More Death - circa 1957
Hello, Willie Shoemaker - circa 1960
Letter From The North - circa 1960
Parts Of An Opera, Parts Of A Guitar, Parts Of Nowhere
Poem For Personnel Managers - circa 1957
Prayer For Broken-Handed Lovers - circa 1960
Riot - circa 1960
So Much For The Knifers, So Much For The Bellowing Dawns - circa 1960
The Ants - circa 1961
The Best Way To Get Famous Is To Run Away - circa 1961
The Day I Kicked A Bankroll Out The Window - circa 1959
The Japanese Wife - circa 1960
The Life Of Borodin - circa 1958
The Loser - circa 1960
The State Of World Affairs From A 3rd Floor Window - circa 1960
The Sun Wields Mercy - circa 1960
The Tragedy Of The Leaves - circa 1960
To The Whore Who Took My Poems - circa 1960
Truth's A Hell Of A Word - circa 1961
What A Man I Was - circa 1959
When Hugo Wolf Went Mad - circa 1959
Where The Hell Would Chopin Be? - circa 1960
Winter Comes In A Lot Of Places In August - circa 1959
Case 6
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