Humor Magazine

Remembering Richard Brautigan

By Humorinamerica @HumorInAmerica

Richard Brautigan, best known for his novella, Trout Fishing in America. As a poet, he purportedly bridged the gap between the beatniks and the hippies.

Saturday (January 29th) would be his 89th birthday if he were still with us. Sadly, he took his own life with a handgun in 1984. He was 49 years old.

Brautigan's poems are terse, highly conceptual (some of his abstract metaphors border on synesthesia) and just plain clever. Many of them are marked by his famously insightful gallows humor.

This unconventional poet resonates with me because he's usually clever and (I think) always right. But don't take my word for it. See for yourself:

The Donner Party

Forsaken, fucking in the cold,
eating each other, lost, runny noses,
complaining all the time like so
many people that we know.

- Richard Brautigan

A Cigarette Butt
A cigarette butt is not a pretty
thing.
It is not like the towering trees,
the green meadows, or the for-
est flowers.
It is not like a gentle fawn, a
singing bird, or a hopping
rabbit.
But these are all gone now,
And in the forest's place is a
Blackened world of charred trees
and rotting flesh-
The remnants of another forrest
fire
A cigarette but is not a pretty
thing.

- Richard Brautigan

Critical Can Opener
There is something wrongwith this poem. Can you find it?

- Richard Brautigan

15%
She tries to get things out of men
that she can't get because she's not
15% prettier.

- Richard Brautigan

Waiting Potatoes
Potatoes await like edible shadows
under the ground. They wait in
their darkness for the light of
the soup.

- Richard Brautigan

Cannibal Carpenter
He wants to build you a house
out of your own bones, but
that's where you're living
any way!
The next time he calls
you answer the telephone with the
sound of your grandmother being
born. It was a twenty-three-hour
labor in 1894. He hangs
up.

- Richard Brautigan


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