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On March 23, 2014, Ea Oerum, a journalist from Copenhagen, Denmark, interviewed Joan Jobe Smith at Charles Bukowski‘s gravesite. Joan did her best to answer Ea’s many young-exuberant, impish-probing questions — but did not want to Tell All, trying to to remain respectful to Buk and his Women. One of the questions: “Why did Buk act that way, get so drunk, be crazy, when he was a genius and had become rich. And why did his Women put up with it?” Joan wondered how to answer accurately without further substantiating the vulgarity, low-life myth that Buk seemed to purposely perpetuate.

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About Buk’s gravesite, Joan Jobe Smith noted, “Each time we visit the site, it is decorated with appropriate zeal, bottle caps, cig butts. But this time the decor was especially remarkable. A visitor had adorned Buk’s grave with two pine cones below the tip of a bottle of Cutty Sark protruding from the vase beneath the headstone. When I placed into the vase the bird of paradise, spearmint and Belgian lily from our garden, however, it changed the raison d’etre of the protruberance. So the concept changed considerably but I hope Bukowski didn’t mind.”

ABOVE PHOTO: Poet Fred Voss, Danish journalist Ea Oarum, and poet/author Joan Jobe Smith at Charles Bukowski‘s gravesite in Green Hills Memorial Park (Rancho Palos Verdes, California). Photo by Clint Margrave, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Joan Jobe Smith is the author of Charles Bukowski Epic Glottis: His Art, His Women (& me), available at Amazon.com.