Los Angeles: Black Sparrow Press, 1968. First Edition. Bukowski's first book published by Black Sparrow Press, a collection of early poems describing L.A. and Hollywood as cold and inhospitable, containing a marvelous and lengthy inscription, composed two weeks after publication, to poet John Thomas Idlet (1930-2002). Bukowski and Thomas maintained a close friendship between 1965-1971; Thomas was one of the few poets whose company Bukowski could stand, and Bukowski thought enough of his work to call him "the best unread poet in America." During the years of their friendship, Thomas recorded many of his conversations with Bukowski during their visits; after Bukowski's death in 1994, Thomas and his then-wife Philomene Long published the recordings under the title Bukowski in the Bathtub: Recollections of Charles Bukowski. A superb contemporary association copy of an early, significant collection. Krumhansl 27b; Dorbin A11. Item #4344
Wrappered Issue, Second State, one of 747 copies with publisher's label with corrected title mounted to front wrapper. Octavo (21.75cm); red wrappers, with titling and border printed in black; ,89,pp; illus. The dedication copy, inscribed in green water-color to Los Angeles poet John Thomas on the preliminary leaf: "For John Thomas / who has trained most of the tigers in his soul and has made them into useful tigers, unlike mine. This is sensible. I am in the cage with mine and they are winning. The only nobility in any man's death is what the living lend it. And most of the living are hardly very noble. Charles Bukowski / June 1st, 1968 / P.S. - Hello, Rosie!" Modest wear to wrappers, light rubbing and dust-soil to title label, with some short tears and attendant creases to yapped edges, and a handful of small stains to margins; Very Good and sound.