40 Charles Bukowski Quotes

A prolific poet, short story writer and novelist. Charles Bukloski left with us many great pieces of work and many great quotes.

The difference between a democracy and a dictatorship is that in a democracy you vote first and take orders later; in a dictatorship you don’t have to waste your time voting.

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Genius might be the ability to say a profound thing in a simple way.

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An intellectual says a simple thing in a hard way. An artist says a hard thing in a simple way.

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If you’re losing your soul and you know it, then you’ve still got a soul left to lose.

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Show me a man who lives alone and has a perpetually clean kitchen, and 8 times out of 9 I’ll show you a man with detestable spiritual qualities.

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You begin saving the world by saving one man at a time; all else is grandiose romanticism or politics.

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I would be married, but I’d have no wife, I would be married to a single life.

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If you want to know who your friends are, get yourself a jail sentence.

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There will always be something to ruin our lives, it all depends on what or which finds us first. We are always ripe and ready to be taken.

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We have wasted History like a bunch of drunks shooting dice back in the men’s crapper of the local bar.

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I don’t like jail, they got the wrong kind of bars in there.

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Humanity, you never had it to begin with.

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Bad taste creates many more millionaires than good taste.

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I never write in the daytime. It’s like running through the shopping mall with your clothes off. Everybody can see you. At night … that’s when you pull the tricks … magic.

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My ambition is handicapped by my laziness.

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You have to die a few times before you can really live.

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I enjoy the bad things that are said about me. It enhances sales and makes me feel evil. I don’t like to feel good ’cause I am good. But evil? Yes. It gives me another dimension.

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The difference between Art and Life is that Art is more bearable.

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The difference between a brave man and a coward is a coward thinks twice before jumping in the cage with a lion. The brave man doesn’t know what a lion is. He just thinks he does.

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The problem was you had to keep choosing between one evil or another, and no matter what you chose, they sliced a little more off you, until there was nothing left.

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Many a good man has been put under the bridge by a woman.

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Writers are desperate people and when they stop being desperate they stop being writers.

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If it doesn’t come bursting out of you in spite of everything, don’t do it. Unless it comes unasked out of your heart and your mind and your mouth and your gut, don’t do it.

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When I begin to doubt my ability to work the word, I simply read another writer and know I have nothing to worry about. My contest is only with myself, to do it right, with power, and force, and delight, and gamble.

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Writing about a writer’s block is better than not writing at all.

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I write as a function. Without it I would fall ill and die. It’s as much a part of one as the liver or intestine, and just about as glamorous.

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There was nothing glorious about the life of a drinker or the life of a writer.

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