100+ Charles Bukowski Quotes On Love

Last Updated on June 20, 2021 by Scott M. Thomas

This is a collection of Charles Bukowski quotes on love and romance. Bukowski was a German–American poet, novelist, and short story writer. His writing was influenced by the social, cultural, and economic ambience of his home city of Los Angeles. His work addresses the ordinary lives of poor Americans, the act of writing, alcohol, relationships with women, and the drudgery of work. Bukowski wrote thousands of poems, hundreds of short stories and six novels, eventually publishing over 60 books.

In this writing you’ll find the best sayings about love that Bukowski ever said. Hope you’ll enjoy it!

“Find what you love and let it kill you.” – Charles Bukowski

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“I was glad I wasn’t in love, that I wasn’t happy with the world. I like being at odds with everything. People in love often become edgy, dangerous. They lose their sense of perspective. They lose their sense of humor. They become nervous, psychotic bores. They even become killers.” – Charles Bukowski

“Love is all right for those who can handle the psychic overload. It’s like trying to carry a full garbage can on your back over a rushing river of piss.” – Charles Bukowski

“I was in love again. I was in trouble.” – Charles Bukowski

“I guess the only time most people think about injustice is when it happens to them.” – Charles Bukowski

“Some people like what you do, some people hate what you do, but most people simply don’t give a damn.” – Charles Bukowski

“If you have the ability to love, love yourself first.” – Charles Bukowski

“What matters most is how well you walk through the fire.” – Charles Bukowski

“There are only two things wrong with money: too much or too little.” – Charles Bukowski

“Almost everybody is born a genius and buried an idiot.” – Charles Bukowski

“When I say that basically writing is a hard hustle, I don’t mean that it is a bad life, if one can get away with it. It’s the miracle of miracles to make a living by the typer.” – Charles Bukowski

“Bad taste creates many more millionaires than good taste.” – Charles Bukowski

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“I would be married, but I’d have no wife, I would be married to a single life.” – Charles Bukowski

“In my work, as a writer, I only photograph, in words, what I see.” – Charles Bukowski

“If you’re going to try, go all the way. Otherwise, don’t even start. This could mean losing girlfriends, wives, relatives and maybe even your mind. It could mean not eating for three or four days. It could mean freezing on a park bench. It could mean jail. It could mean derision. It could mean mockery isolation. Isolation is the gift. All the others are a test of your endurance, of how much you really want to do it. And, you’ll do it, despite rejection and the worst odds. And it will be better than anything else you can imagine. If you’re going to try, go all the way. There is no other feeling like that. You will be alone with the gods, and the nights will flame with fire. You will ride life straight to perfect laughter. It’s the only good fight there is.” – Charles Bukowski

“It’s when you begin to lie to yourself in a poem in order to simply make a poem, that you fail.” – Charles Bukowski

“It’s possible to love a human being if you don’t know them too well.” – Charles Bukowski

“Hey baby, when I write, I’m the hero of my shit.” – Charles Bukowski

“Sometimes I’ve called writing a disease. If so, I’m glad that it caught me.” – Charles Bukowski

“Genius might be the ability to say a profound thing in a simple way.” – Charles Bukowski

“Goodness can be found sometimes in the middle of hell.” – Charles Bukowski

charles bukowski quotes on love images

“You have to die a few times before you can really live.” – Charles Bukowski

“An intellectual says a simple thing in a hard way. An artist says a hard thing in a simple way.” – Charles Bukowski

“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.” – Charles Bukowski

“If you get married they think you’re finished and if you are without a woman they think you’re incomplete.” – Charles Bukowski

“Of course it’s possible to love a human being if you don’t know them too well.” – Charles Bukowski

“What a woman wants is a reaction. What a man wants is a woman.” – Charles Bukowski

“I remember awakening one morning and finding everything smeared with the color of forgotten love.” – Charles Bukowski

“Sex is kicking death in the ass while singing.” – Charles Bukowski

“Pain is strange. A cat killing a bird, a car accident, a fire…. Pain arrives, BANG, and there it is, it sits on you. It’s real. And to anybody watching, you look foolish. Like you’ve suddenly become an idiot. There’s no cure for it unless you know somebody who understands how you feel, and knows how to help.” – Charles Bukowski

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

charles bukowski quotes love is a dog from hell

“This is very important – to take leisure time. Pace is the essence. Without stopping entirely and doing nothing at all for great periods, you’re gonna lose everything…just to do nothing at all, very, very important. And how many people do this in modern society? Very few. That’s why they’re all totally mad, frustrated, angry and hateful.” – Charles Bukowski

“Writers are desperate people and when they stop being desperate they stop being writers.” – Charles Bukowski

“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.” – Charles Bukowski

“I don’t like the clean-shaven boy with the necktie and the good job. I like desperate men, men with broken teeth and broken minds and broken ways. They interest me. They are full of surprises and explosions.” – Charles Bukowski

“I kept writing not because I felt I was so good, but because I felt they were so bad, including Shakespeare, all those. The stilted formalism, like chewing cardboard.” – Charles Bukowski

“When I write, when I’m going hot, I don’t want to write more than four hours in a row. After that, you’re pushing it.” – Charles Bukowski

“My days, my years, my life have seen ups and downs, lights and darknesses. If I wrote only and continually of the ‘light’ and never mentioned the other, then as an artist, I would be a liar.” – Charles Bukowski

“The more cats you have, the longer you live. If you have a hundred cats, you’ll live 10 times longer than if you have 10. Someday this will be discovered, and people will have a thousand cats and live forever. It’s truly ridiculous.” – Charles Bukowski

“Those who have been writing literature have not been writing life.” – Charles Bukowski

“But what can I make of love when we are all born at a different time and place and only meet through a trick of centuries and a chance three steps to the left? you.” – Charles Bukowski

“You have to die a few times before you can really live.” – Charles Bukowski

charles bukowski quotes about life

“She’s mad, but she’s magic. There’s no lie in her fire.” – Charles Bukowski

“Of course it’s possible to love a human being if you don’t know them too well.” – Charles Bukowski

“All of which is to say, I didn’t pay a hell of a lot of attention to grammar, and when I write it is for the love of the word, the color, like tossing paint on a canvas, and using a lot of ear and having read a bit here and there, I generally come out ok, but technically I don’t know what’s happening, nor do I care.” – Charles Bukowski

“An intellectual says a simple thing in a hard way. An artist says a hard thing in a simple way.” – Charles Bukowski

“There’s no way I can stop writing, it’s a form of insanity.” – Charles Bukowski

“Even though I write about the human race, the further away from them, the better I feel. Two miles is great; two thousand miles is beautiful.” – Charles Bukowski

“God, love is more strange than numbers, more strange than grass on fire, more strange than the dead body of a child drowned in the bottom of a tub, we know so little, we know so much, we don’t know enough.” – Charles Bukowski

“to ignore life at the proper time takes a special wisdom: like a Happy New Year to you all.” – Charles Bukowski

“I will remember the hours of kissing our lips raw with love and how you offered me your cunt your soul your insides and how I answered offering you whatever was left of me.” – Charles Bukowski

“it’s like an old movie– 35 years old– that nobody ever saw or understood but me

and even though the critics would dub it ordinary, I like it very much.” – Charles Bukowski

“The most immense thing about beauty is finding it gone.” – Charles Bukowski

charles bukowski quotes about life and love

“We know so little, we know so much, we don’t know enough.” – Charles Bukowski

“She wants me to write a love poem but I think if people can’t love each other’s assholes and farts and shits and terrible parts just like they love the good parts, that ain’t complete love.” – Charles Bukowski

“There are so many days when life stops and pulls up and sits and waits like a train on the rails. I passed the hotel.” – Charles Bukowski

“she’s grinning, her eyes bright with the remainder of the world.” – Charles Bukowski

“That’s the problem with drinking, I thought, as I poured myself a drink. If something bad happens you drink in an attempt to forget; if something good happens you drink in order to celebrate; and if nothing happens you drink to make something happen.” – Charles Bukowski

“being alone never felt right. sometimes it felt good, but it never felt right.” – Charles Bukowski

“People with no morals often considered themselves more free, but mostly they lacked the ability to feel or love.” – Charles Bukowski

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

“I wanted the whole world or nothing.” – Charles Bukowski

“Sometimes you climb out of bed in the morning and you think, I’m not going to make it, but you laugh inside – remembering all the times you’ve felt that way.” – Charles Bukowski

“No light goes out until it goes out. Let’s fight as men, not rats. Period.” – Charles Bukowski

charles bukowski quotes about life images

“How the hell could a person enjoy being awakened at 6:30AM, by an alarm clock, leap out of bed, dress, force-feed, shit, piss, brush teeth and hair, and fight traffic to get to a place where essentially you made lots of money for somebody else and were asked to be grateful for the opportunity to do so?” – Charles Bukowski

“Somebody once asked me what my theory of life was, and I said, ‘Don’t try.’ That fits the writing, too. I don’t try; I just type.” – Charles Bukowski

“We are here to drink beer. We are here to kill war. We are here to laugh at the odds and live our lives so well that death will tremble to take us.” – Charles Bukowski

“If I stop writing I am dead. And that’s the only way I’ll stop: dead.” – Charles Bukowski

“If you want to know who your friends are, get yourself a jail sentence.” – Charles Bukowski

“Some people never go crazy, What truly horrible lives they must live.” – Charles Bukowski

“Poetry is what happens when nothing else can.” – Charles Bukowski

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

“People are strange: they are constantly angered by trivial things, but on a major matter like totally wasting their lives, they hardly seem to notice.” – Charles Bukowski

“It’s better to do a dull thing with style than a dangerous thing without it.” – Charles Bukowski

“And yet women-good women–frightened me because they eventually wanted your soul, and what was left of mine, I wanted to keep.” – Charles Bukowski

charles bukowski quotes on love

“Oh, I don’t mean you’re handsome, not the way people think of handsome. Your face seems kind. But your eyes – they’re beautiful. They’re wild, crazy, like some animal peering out of a forest on fire.” – Charles Bukowski

“I was settled into nothingness; a kind of non-being, and I accepted it. It didn’t make for an interesting person. I didn’t want to be interesting, it was too hard. What I really wanted was only a soft, hazy space to live in, and to be left alone.” – Charles Bukowski

“Look, let me put it this way: with me, you’re number one and there isn’t even a number two.” – Charles Bukowski

“There’s no way I can stop writing, it’s a form of insanity.” – Charles Bukowski

“Don’t do it. Don’t love me.” – Charles Bukowski

“When I was young I was depressed all the time. But suicide no longer seemed a possibility in my life. At my age there was very little left to kill. It was good to be old, no matter what they said. It was reasonable that a man had to be at least 50 years old before he could write with anything like clarity.” – Charles Bukowski

“I was in love again. I was in trouble.” – Charles Bukowski

“Everything is beautiful. We have all this beauty in the world and all we have to do is reach out and touch it, it is all there and all ours for the taking.” – Charles Bukowski

“She had wild eyes, slightly insane. She also carried an overload of compassion that was real enough and which obviously cost her something.” – Charles Bukowski

“Humanity, you never had it from the beginning.” That was my motto.” – Charles Bukowski

“I loved you like a man loves a woman he never touches, only writes to, keeps little photographs of.” – Charles Bukowski

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“Yet women -good women- frightened me because they eventually wanted your soul, and what was left of mine, I wanted to keep. Basically I craved prostitutes, base women, because they were deadly and hard and made no personal demands. Nothing was lost when they left. Yet at the same time I yearned for a gentle, good woman, despite the overwhelming price.” – Charles Bukowski

“We’re all going to die, all of us, what a circus! That alone should make us love each other but it doesn’t. We are terrorized and flattened by trivialities, we are eaten up by nothing.” – Charles Bukowski

“Look, let me put it this way: with me, you’re number one and there isn’t even a number two.” – Charles Bukowski

“My dear, Find what you love and let it kill you. Let it drain you of your all. Let it cling onto your back and weigh you down into eventual nothingness. Let it kill you and let it devour your remains. For all things will kill you, both slowly and fastly, but it’s much better to be killed by a lover.” – Charles Bukowski

“Love is kind of like when you see a fog in the morning, when you wake up before the sun comes out. It’s just a little while, and then it burns away… Love is a fog that burns with the first daylight of reality.” – Charles Bukowski

“Find what you love and let it kill you.” – Charles Bukowski

“And love is a word used too much and much too soon.” – Charles Bukowski

“Sometimes you climb out of bed in the morning and you think, I’m not going to make it, but you laugh inside — remembering all the times you’ve felt that way.” – Charles Bukowski

“We are here to laugh at the odds and live our lives so well that Death will tremble to take us.” – Charles Bukowski

“Too often the people complain that they have done nothing with their lives and then they wait for somebody to tell them that this isn’t so.” – Charles Bukowski

charles bukowski love quotes

“I wanted the whole world or nothing.” – Charles Bukowski

“Almost everybody is born a genius and buried an idiot.” – Charles Bukowski

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