The strongest of the strange
by Charles Bukowski
You don’t see them often, for wherever the crowd is, they are not.
These odd ones, not many, but from them come the few good paintings, the few good symphonies, the few good books and other works…and from the best of the strange ones perhaps nothing. They are their own paintings, their own books, their own music, their own work.
Sometimes I think I see them – say a certain old man, sitting on a certain bench, in a certain way …or a quick face going the other way in a passing automobile or there is a certain motion of the hands of a bag-boy or a bag-girl while packing supermarket groceries.
Sometimes it is even somebody you have been living with for some time – you will notice lightning quick glance never seen from them before. Sometimes you will only note their existence suddenly in vivid recall some months, some years after they are gone.
I remember such a one – he was about 20 years old, drunk at 10 AM staring into a cracked New Orleans mirror facing dreaming against the walls of the world. Where did I go?