Defending His Life

Regarding the article “Bukowski’s Ruin?” [November 23–29] by Matthew Fleischer:

Before my late husband Charles Bukowski and I were married, my last name was Beighle. Before we met, one of his girlfriends was named Linda King. She was never married to him, as you wrote. That is a terrible and hurtful mistake. Unfortunately, that is only the beginning; John Martin did not meet Bukowski at the De Longpre address. He met him on Carlton Way, another place on another street. Bukowski “researched” and wrote the novel Women not at the De Longpre address but on Carlton Way, another place on another street. If you believe that fucking women was all he was doing at this time you are again grossly mistaken. That period in his life was when (due to becoming more widely read) he first had the opportunity to experience all kinds of women, not only for sex, but to be involved in actual relationships. They were women with minds as well as bodies, with various degrees of intellect, artistic creativity, physical attributes, lifestyles, careers, etc.

As far as the wretched Nazi accusations by the bungalow’s owner, Victoria Gureyeva: Charles Bukowski was never a Nazi! That is it, plain and simple. Oh, and one more little inaccuracy: When I went up to biographer Ben Pleasants at a book signing, I quietly handed him a two-page note. In it I don’t think I said, “Fuck You!” but “SHAME ON YOU!” Now, regarding the situation about making the place on De Longpre Avenue a landmark, may I just say that Hank wouldn’t have cared a wink about it. The De Longpre address was but one of many that Hank rented and wrote in during his years in L.A. Indeed the novel Post Office was written there, but so many more books were written at the Carlton Way address: two novels, one screenplay, a book of short stories and three books of poetry. After that, the rest of his work was written in San Pedro, in the home where he lived until his last precious breath, and where I still reside with nine cats. But for Ms. Gureyeva to state that my husband “loved Hitler” and that he is “Hitler number two” is extremely disturbing, malicious and, I might add, possibly libelous. I truly hope that the L.A. Cultural Heritage Commission sees through to the real reason this woman is putting up this battle.

Linda Lee Bukowski

San Pedro

Editor’s note: According to John Martin, he did meet Bukowski at the De Longpre address. And according to several sources, much of Bukowski’s novel Women had to do with Linda King, his neighbor on De Longpre.

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