2011-08-03

Remembering Jack Kerouac

From Jack Kerouac:

From On the Road:
The only people for me are the mad ones,
the ones who are mad to live,
mad to talk, mad to be saved,
desirous of everything at the same time,
the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing,
but burn, burn, burn, like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue centerlight pop and everybody goes "Awww!"
From Visions of Cody:
It no longer makes me cry and die and tear myself to see her go because everything goes away from me like that now — girls, visions, anything, just in the same way and forever and I accept lostness forever. . . .
I'm writing this book because we're all going to die.
In the loneliness of my life, my father dead, my brother dead, my mother far away, my sister and my wife far away,
nothing here but my own tragic hands
that once were guarded by a world,
a sweet attention,
that now are left to guide and disappear their own way into the common dark of all our death,
sleeping in me raw bed, alone and stupid. . . .
At the junction of the state line of Colorado,
its arid western one,
and the state line of poor Utah
I saw in the clouds huge and massed above the fiery golden desert of eveningfall
the great image of God with forefinger pointed straight at me
through halos and rolls and gold folds
that were like the existence of the gleaming spear in His right hand,
and sayeth, Go thou across the ground;
go moan for man; go moan, go groan,
go groan alone go roll your bones, alone;
go thou and be little beneath my sight;
go thou, and be minute and as seed in the pod,
go thou, go thou, and die hence;
and of this world report you well and truly.
Here's Kerouac himself reading:



The final page of On the Road:
“D’you think I can ride to Fortieth Street with you?” he whispered.
“Want to be with you as much as possible, m’boy, and besides it’s so durned cold in this here New Yawk…”
I whispered to Remi.
No, he wouldn’t have it.
He liked me but he didn’t like my idiot friends. . . .

So Dean couldn’t ride uptown with us and the only thing I could do was sit in the back of the Cadillac and wave at him. . . .

Dean, ragged in a motheaten overcoat he brought specially for the freezing termperatures of the East, walked off alone,
and the last I saw of him he rounded the corner of Seventh Avenue,
eyes on the street ahead,
and bent to it again.
Poor little Laura, my baby, to whom I’d told everything about Dean, began almost to cry.
“Oh, we shouldn’t let him go like this. What’ll we do?”
Old Dean’s gone, I thought, and out loud I said: “He’ll be all right.”
And off we went to the sad and disinclined concert for which I had no stomach whatever
and all the time I was thinking of Dean
and how he got back on the train and rode over three thousand miles over that awful land
and never knew why he had come anyway, except to see me.
So in America when the sun goes down
and I sit on the old broken-down river pier watching the long, long skies over New Jersey
and sense all that raw land that rolls in one unbelievable huge bulge over to the West Coast,
and all that road going, all the people dreaming in the immensity of it,
and in Iowa I know by now the children must be crying in the land where they let the children cry,
and tonight the stars’ll be out,
and don’t you know that God is Pooh Bear?
The evening star must be drooping and shedding her sparkler dims on the prairie,
which is just before the coming of complete night that blesses the earth,
darkens all rivers, cups the peaks and folds the final shore in,
and nobody, nobody knows what’s going to happen to anybody besides the forlorn rags of growing old,
I think of Dean Moriarty,
I even think of Old Dean Moriarty, the father we never found,
I think of Dean Moriarty.