On the Road

Dharma Bums

Visions of Cody




On The Road



But then they danced down the streets like dingledodies and I shambled after as I've been doing all my life after people who interest me, because 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 like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue centerlight and everybody goes "Aww!"


...The road is life


So in America when the sun goes down and I sit on the old broken-down Pier watching the long, long skies over New Jersey and sense all that raw land that folls in one unbelievable huge bulge over to the west coast, and all of 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 prarie which is just before the coming of complete night that blesses the eart, 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 od Dean Moriarty, I even think of old Dean Moriarty the father we never found, I think of Dean Moriarty.


He was simply a youth tremendously excited with life, and though he was a con-man, he was only conniving because he wanted so much to live and to get involved with people who would otherwise pay no attention to him.


He watched over my houlder as I wrote stories, yelling, "Yes! That's right! Wow! Man!" and "Phew!" and wiped his face with his handkerchief. "Man, wow, there's so many things to do, so many things to write! How to even begin to get it all down without modified restraints and all hung up on like literary inhibitions and grammatical fears..."


[Cassady and Ginsberg] rushed down the street together, digging everything in the early way they had, which later became so much sadder and perceptive to me.


But Dean's intelligence was every bit as formal and shining and complete, without the tedious intellectualness. And his "criminality" was not something that sulked and sneered; it was a wild yea-saying outburst of American joy; it was Western, the west wind, an ode from the Plains, something new, long prophesied, long a-coming (he only stole cars for joy rides.) Besides, all my New York friends were in the negative, nightmare position of putting down society and giving their tired bookish or political or psychoanalytical reasons, but Dean just raced in society, eager for bread and love; he didn't care one way or the other...


I woke up as the sun was reddening; and that was the one distinct time in my life, the strangest moment of all, when I didn't know who I was--I was far away from home, haunted and tired with travel, in a cheap hotel room I'd never seen, hearing the hiss of steam outside, and the creak of the old wood of the hotel, and footsteps upstairs, and all the sad sounds, and I looked at the cracked high ceiling and really didn't know who I was for about fifteen strange sounds. I wasn't scared; I was just somebody else, some stranger, and my whole life was a haunted life, the life of a ghost. I was halfway across America, at the dividing line between the East of my youth and the west of my future, and maybe that's why it happened right there and then, that strange red afternoon.


The one thing that we yearn for in our living days, that makes us sigh and groan and undergo sweet nauseas of all kinds is the rememberance of some lost bliss that was probably experienced in the womb and can only be reproduced (though we hate to admit it) in death.


I realized that I had died and been reborn numerous times but just didn't remember especially because the transitions from life to death and back to life are so ghostly easy, a magical action for naught, like falling asleep and waking up again a million times, the utter casualness and deep ignorance of it. I realized it was only because of the stability of the intrinsic mind that these rippples of birth and death took place, like the action of wind on a sheet of pure, serene, mirror-like water.


She loved that man madly, but in a delerious way of some kind; there was never any mooching and mincing around, just talk and a very deep companionship that none of us would ever be able to fathom. Something curiously unsympathetic and cold between them was really a form of humor by which they communicated their own set of subtle vibrations. Love is all...Kerouac on Jane and Burroughs



The Dharma Bums

...colleges being nothing but grooming schools for the middle class non-identity which usually finds it perfect expression on the outskirts of the campus in rows of well-to-do houses with lawns and television sets in each living room with everybody looking at the same thing and thinking the same thing at the same time while the Japhies of the world go prowling in the wilderness to hear that voice crying in the wilderness to find the ecstasy of the stars, to find the dark mysterious secret of the origin of faceless wonderless crapulous civilization.



Visions of Cody

This is the bottom of the world, where little raggedy Codys dream, as rich men plan gleaming plastic auditoriums and soaring glass fronts on Park Avenue and the rich districts of Denver and the world.


Always this kind of girl in church: unbearably pretty, unbearably neat, carrying unbearably crisp and crinkling package, unbearably stylish and in gay but not wild colors--this one white silk kerchief well flowed and green coat--and unbearably sharp clean high heels--but I always think: "You're too unbearable for anything--the least or the most of which is the house of the real dying God--Where do you go, doll of the bathtub? to Purgatory to clean up some more--to hell to burn neatly--to heaven for snow--to church to add fresh snow to the snow of your soul?--have you sinned? can it be? Is the white snow of church respectability what you come for?" But this is wasteful speculation--Now in Mexico, on San Juan Letran, I know churches where little barefooted girls in rags kneel in dust--and in Lowell, through, you'll see crispy-clean in church, she's everywhere, I don't know what she's up to, who she's trying to drive away(me I guess)--speculation--...


...I now go out, tired, into my own thoughts and have no place to go but find my road.


Now she goes--beautifully, wtih simplicity. 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.
Everything belongs to me because I am poor.


...I am conscious of my own personal tragedy, my sleep, that is my room itself is haunted by it at night when I sleep or wake from a series of restless desperate images, catching myself in the act of shuffling the file cards of the memory or the mind under the deck, aware also of the tragedy, the loneliness of my mother. I have the persistent feeling that I'm going to die soon, only the feeling, no real I think wish or "premonition," I feel like I've done wrong, to myself the most wrong, I'm throwing away something that I can't even find in the incredible clutter of my being but its going out with the refuse en masse, buried in the middle of it, every now and then I get a glimpse. I get so sick thinking of the years I wasted...


Oh little Cody Pomeray if there had been some way to send a cry to you even when you were too little to know what utterances and cries are for in this dark sad earth, with your terrors in a world so malign and inhospitable, and all the insults from heaven ramming down to crown your head with anger, pain, disgrace, worst of all the crapulous poverty in and out of every splintered door of days, if someone could have said to you then, and made you percieve, "Fear life but don't die; you're alone, everybody's alone. Oh Cody Pomeray, you can't win, you can't lose, all is ephermal, all is hurt.


...I wish God had made me vaster than myself--I wish I had ten personalities, one hundred golden brains, far more ports than are ports, more energy than the river, but I must struggle to live it all, and on foot, and in these little crepesole shoes, all of it, or give up completely.


I'm completely your friend, your "lover", he who loves you and digs your greatness completely--haunted in the mind by you (think what that means, try to reverse, say, supposing you referred all your sensations to somebody, and wondered what they thought about it).Jack to Neal


...and so while I struggle in the dark with the enormity of my soul, trying desperately to be a great rememberer redeeming life from darkness...


...if you could stay high with me forever, and together we'd lay in the pool of myself wrapped in yourself...if you die I die


...you beautiful doll the hairs on your thigh are my midnight; the lights in your eye-stars make me see the moon with its old sad face always mooning over the world no matter what's happening; it were you and me, under a roof, dar, love, heart, the moon with same saddened biceptual, bisexual condomidance would erupt her blue lights to our souls and you, you angel, your wrist makes me hungry, your every tiny womanhood part of you and all over you is and it is woman, I couldn't resist you in church, I'd lick your snowy belly anywhere, in front of any crowds, any time, on the cross, in Golgotha, on a snowpile, on a picket fence...and I want you to just lie back and watch me, watch me, you can watch me all you want and I can watch you all I want, perfect understanding, no more Rimbauds, no more toiletries, poetries, just like you always, wanted to be, from the beginning to now the start...


...and I dig you as we together dig the lostness and the fact that of course nothing's ever to be gained but death...


America, the word, the sound is the sound of my unhappiness, the pronunciation of my beat and stupid grief--my happiness has no such name as America, it has a more personal smaller more tittering secret name--America is being wanted by the police, persued across Kentucky and Ohio, sleeping with the stockyard rats and howling tin shingles of gloomy hideaway silos, is the picture of an axe in True Detective Magazine, is the impersonal nighttime at crossings and junctions where everybody looks both ways, four ways, nobody cares-- America is where you're not even allowed to cry for yourself -- Its where Greeks try hard to be accepted and sometimes they're Maltese or from Cyprus--America is what laid on Cody Pomeray's soul the onus and the stigma--that in the form of a big plainclothesman beat the shit out of him in a backroom till he talked about something which isn't even important anymore-- America (TEENAGE DOPE SEX CAR RING!!) is also the red neon and the thighs in the cheap motel--It's where at night the staggering drunks began to appear like cockroaches when the bars close--It is where people, people, people are weeping and chewing their lips in bars as well as lone beds and masturbating in a million ways in every hiding hole you can find in the dark--It has evil roads behind gas tanks where murderous dogs snarl from behind wire fences and cruisers suddenly leap out like getaway cars but from a crime more secret, more baneful than words can tell-- It is where Cody Pomeray learned that people aren't good, they want to be bad--where he learned that they want to cringe and beat, and snarl is the name of their lovemaking--America made bones of a young boy's face and took dark paints and made hollows around his eyes, and made his cheeks sink in pallid paste and grew furrows on a marble front and transformed the eager wishfulness into the thicklipped silent wisdom of saying nothing, not even to yourself in the middle of the goddamn night--the click of coffee saucers in the poor poor night--Someone's gurgling work at a lunchcart dishpan (in bleakhowl Colorado voids for nothing)--Ah and nobody cares but the heart in the middle of US that will reappear when the salesmen all die. America's a lonely crockashit.




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