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A selection of quotes by, and about, Jack
by Rick (acerc)
at August 13th, 2006 (07:59 am)

From the Official Jack Kerouac Web Site


By Jack

"Offer them what they secretly want and they of course immediately become panic-stricken."

“As early pioneers in the knowing, that when you lose your reason, you attain highest perfect knowing.”
...“Book of Blues”

“All things are like visions beyond the reach of the human mind.”

“But let the mind beware, that though the flesh be bugged, the circumstances of existence are pretty glorious.”
...“The Dharma Bums”

“I hope it is true that a man can die and yet not only live in others but give them life, and not only life, but that great consciousness of life.”

“You can’t have birth without existence and you can’t have death without birth.”

"...Ah, life is a gate, a way, a path to Paradise anyway, why not live for fun and joy and love or some sort of girl by a fireside, why not go to your desire and LAUGH..."
...“Big Sur”

“My witness is the empty sky.”

“Desolation, desolation, I owe so much to desolation.”
...“The Dharma Bums”

“My aunt once said the world would never find peace until men fell at their women’s feet and asked for forgiveness.”

“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..."
...“On The Road”

“You’d be surprised how little I knew even up to yesterday.”

“It’s like old newspapers blowing down Bleecker Street.”
...response to a question about fame

“I’d rather be thin than famous.”

“Dean, don’t drive so fast in the daytime...ah hell, Dean, I’m going in the back seat, I can’t stand it anymore, I can’ look."
...“On the Road”

“I’m not a beatnik, I’m a Catholic.”

About Jack

“Well he was the first one to make a new crack in the consciousness.”
...poet, philosopher and political activist Allen Ginsberg

“I never head Jack put down another writer. He went out of his way to encourage young writers. His work reflects this spirit of generosity, kindness and love.”
...noted Jazz musician, David Amram

“Jack Kerouac is a spirit embodied in words, in honesty, in art, in truth, in life. Anyone who reads Kerouac participates in that spirit but no one owns it. It’s free for the taking.”
...producer / director, Jack Shea

"All the pain and sorrow, the Beatnik myth, the jealous and embittered detractors are part of the past. Jack through his glorious writings, is a shining light to all of us...and gives us all energy and inspiration."
...DHARMA beat co-editor, Attila Gyenis

“When he got somewhere where he could settle down for a few weeks or months he would write like crazy...he’d been collecting the notes and things all the time he was roaming around.”
...Carolyn Cassady (wife of Neal Cassady) and author of “Off the Road”

“Whatever you feel, that’s the way jazz musicians do it. What (he) also knew was that...people like Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie were skilled, crafted musicians. This didn’t just come out of a whim.”
...Kerouac scholar, David Brinkley

“His ideal was not to display his literary skill, but to have a conversation with the reader.”
...noted Jazz musician, David Amram

“If you read ‘On the Road,’ it’s a valentine to the United States...pure poetry for almost a boy’s love for his country that’s just gushing in its adjectives and descriptions."
...Kerouac scholar, David Brinkley

“Jack lay down obscure for the last time in his life...[he] went to bed obscure and work up famous.”
...girlfriend Joyce Johnson who was living with Jack in a New York apartment when “On the Road” was published.