Charles Bukowski

"The World’s Greatest Loser (Live)"

the world's greatest loser

he used to sell papers in front
"getcha winners! get rich on a dime!"
and about the third or fourth race
you’d see him rolling on his rotten board, with his roller skates
underneath
he'd propel himself along on his hands
he just had small stumps for legs
and the rims of the skate wheels were worn off
you could see inside the wheels and they would wobble something awful
shooting and flashing imperialistic sparks
he moved faster than anybody
rolled cigarette dangling, you could hear him coming
"god almighty! what was that?" the new ones ask
he was the world's greatest loser
but he never gave up
wheeling toward the two dollar window screaming
"its the four horse you fools! how the hell you gonna beat the four!?"
up on the board the four would be reading sixty to one
i never heard him pick a winner

they say he slept in the bushes
i guess that’s where he died
he's not around anymore
there was a big fat blonde who kept touching him for luck and laughing
nobody had any luck
the whore is gone too
i guess nothing ever works for us
we're fools, of course
bucking the inside plus a fifteen percent take
how are you going to tell a dreamer when there's a fifteen percent take on the dream
he'll just laugh and say, "is that all?"
i miss those sparks

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