Do You Know Jack?

So therefore I dedicate myself, to my art, my sleep, my dreams, my labors, my suffrances, my loneliness, my unique madness, my endless absorption and hunger because I cannot dedicate myself to any fellow being

Jack Kerouac

On the Road with Devotion

…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…      Jack Kerouac

 

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The yellowed pages had been many places before.

Just as I have.

In truth, the book had been many places more.

From candlestick to wrinkles in time on the road.

Fabled lines where dreamers who dream can go.

And,

in numerous ways,

an outlet for the abused to avoid the scold.

Everything between leather and lace.

Recollections of wonderful sin…

Where the journey begins.

Wonderful…

the ecstasy of paper-thin pulp.

A library amassed with the texture of worn wafer.

An effortless phrase would slay a demon.

Chapters bound with heroic souls who made us safer.

Smoked stained pages absorbing all our childhood fears…

All our childhood wages.

“Happiness consists in realizing it is all a great strange dream”
“Happiness consists in realizing it is all a great strange dream”

 

 

Hippie, Hippie, Shake

abby hoffman

Freak: a person who is strange or different. A term of derision, typically used to dismiss someone outside of one’s social clique. Also used as a playful tease.

“When we heard about the hippies, the barely more than boys and girls who decided to try something different… we laughed at them. We condemned them, our children, for seeking a different future. We hated them for their flowers, for their love, and for their unmistakable rejection of every hideous, mistaken compromise that we had made throughout our hollow, money-bitten, frightened, adult lives.”
Author: June Jordan

It is unfortunate that those who follow a certain pattern of behavior, particularly, millennials, do not grasp the true meaning of Hippie Freak.

Just the other day, while working as a Bernie lead during the New Hampshire primary…I politely, and with honor in mind, referred to a new found friend as…

Hippie Freak.

Course, that was taken out of context.

Stand proud young man, wake confident, young women,  to be considered a modern day,

unique, inquisitive and free spirit.  It is nothing more than an old hippies of way of saying,

‘Your shit is pretty cool.  Keep the peace!’

abby 2.jpg
Free speech means the right to shout ‘theatre’ in a crowded fire.  -Abbie Hoffman

 

the Quotable Beatnik

On The Road  with Jack Kerouac
On The Road
with
Jack Kerouac
On The Road with Jack Kerouac
On The Road
with
Jack Kerouac

As I take out my…paperback novel…there is only one direction in which my spirit will roam. It will accost the unwilling young adult that resides in me …heading in no real direction but with a belly full of asshole writer adrenaline.

The paperback novel has what no other edible, explainable and/or tangible item has, history that smells like faded ink and feels like you are touching the worn hands of such greats as, Mark Twain, Edgar Allan Poe or Jack Kerouac.

I had been in search of faith this week. Subdued by winter. Passive aggressive towards the adult decisions I have to make. The question begs me during these times of turmoil and possible self discovery…What do the faithless do? How do they survive? What is the name of their disability..the handicap that makes these, earth persons, smile all the f—ing time?

When I get touched by the S.A.D.! Seasonal Asshole Disorder…I do what any person who dabbles in self indulgence does, I pull out a book of woe!

My Sylvia Plath collection had been packed away. Poe’s the Raven had flown the coup. My two book collection set of Hitler’s Time and Tyranny…got burned in the last fire that wouldn’t start via it’s own abilities.

Funny, all I really could see out a vast wall of totally not connected literary greats and not so greats…On The Road.

Even odder? The page I happened upon. Pages 292 – 293. Part and parcel of a not wonderfully organized book. But a piece of Americana an a lifestyle…I had always envisioned myself being part of.

I have taken the easy way out by snapping a Jack Kerouac Worded Selfie. Something I am sure, Jack, himself, would find very amusing. Particularly in the self indulgent aspect.

The two small faded easily ripped and soiled pages are not much to the submissively conforming eye. But to those of us who wish to see something in everything. The handful of paragraphs discuss FAITH in an oblique but ‘out of this world’ manner.

someone else always knows the answers

In a nutshell, does a drive without headlights into a vast unknowing and at times, threatening area of darkness (real or imagined) evoke a certain kind of faith? Or, does one turn it around, pretend and bend to the idea that life and divinity…should be well lit and easily navigated?

Or, maybe, just possibly, none of the two means to an end… come into play at all. Does the FAITHFUL…no matter, the spirit/higher power he/she chooses to follow…bare all? As in the selected reading, that just happened to make itself available to me…while I dwell on my occasional fight with conscientiousness:

Three young, wild, free spirited and often times, high on more than life, antagonists, find themselves without light in a Bayou, a swamp, a creepy place that could hold the promise of enlightenment or maybe the vow of certain death.

The choice in the book and to those who have had faith, argued with it and eventually, shook hands with it, hugged it and welcomed back home. The choice is easy. Run, scream, sing and dance in the moonlight. Embrace the creatures of the night. It is a serenade of virtue mixed with the unknown. Run naked and place no plans on the destiny. Destiny will only happen if we participate in the making of it.

ON the Road with Faith

I found my answer to my battle with FAITH within those few pages. At least, for now, until a new chapter of unplanned hell opens up. Simply put, I did not need to put my spiritual devotion and it’s teachings… …upon a shelf. Somewhat like a paperback novel. My faith is akin to running naked through the night. Running into people, places and things that scare me yet open my eyes to new ways…of living.

Butta’s Ugly Factory

A street sign showing Jack Kerouac Alley, in h...
A street sign showing Jack Kerouac Alley, in his hometown of Lowell, Massachusetts. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

There had been a small town in Northern New England.  So tiny it seemed…that when one shut a door another one opened!

“Happiness consists in realizing it is all a great strange dream”
Jack Kerouac

Butta, a very unsatisfied Diva ’bout ten years old, had been as plain as the donuts that filled her soul.  She was naughty, not nice.  And, for the most part, if the ship of fools needed a captain, even her parents would recommend her for the role.  It could also be said that Butta lived a life almost beyond her parent’s means.  Her parents had become so accustomed to make Butta’s obscure wishes true that they feared to refuse her a thing.

Many times, Butta insisted on traveling.  For that is what little Princess’s without a kingdom do.  They travel.  However, Butta would reprimand her father anytime they visited the same old drabby part of the countryside.  She wished to see things new and fresh.  To make matters worse, Butta’s father began purchasing high-end toys.  Toys only found on the Isle of Make Believe.  Mr. Butta had been fortunate have made a fake fortune selling used cars.  Had he been any other meek and blue collared soul Butta’s unending appetite would have surely put him in the land of poverty-stricken but happy fools.

One day while traveling to partake in the Festival of Spoiled Children somewhere north of the northern most county line: Butta had spotted an elderly woman, ’bout forty, wearing a new pair of Ugs.   Screaming, crying and out an out pitching a tizzy, Butta would no longer stand for the restraints her father put her in and ran down the cobblestone street only to tackle the older woman.  Mr. Butta stood in awe as Butta and the Elder rolled about on the dusty sidewalk.  The two had somehow become one.  And, within an instant, Butta emerged from the mud fest clutching the coveted Ugs.

In shame and disbelief that to reprimand a tot with a quick spank is now consider child abuse, Mr. Butta had no choice but to buy the woman and her prized boots off.

As the snow turned to muck and muck to flower, Mr.and Mrs. Butta found themselves with a house full of guests.  Family and friends had come from all around to join in the local Mud wrestling show the town put on every April 1st.

One distant cousin in particular had arrived,  the forever smiling Towanda.  She had been Butta’s age and the folks had hoped some mindless play on the internet unsupervised would do their daughter some good.   In truth everyone had high hopes that this new kinship would put an end to Butta’s life of misfit desires and moments of 10 going on 30.

As the adults were preparing for the festival’s cow tipping and mud pie contests, a shriek could be heard from far and wide.  Running into the den it has been said, that Towanda had almost lost her face to Butta’s misguided ideals.

a fake smile is nothing but a mouth full of teeth

“It is much nicer than mine!  I want it,” bellowed Butta.  With much struggle for all the adults had had their wet suits on already; Towanda’s face was pried from Butta’s grasp.

Later that night when the town had put itself to bed.  Butta awoke to an elderly man looming above her tussled head.

“Are you that girl who bitches about her face?” demanded the wrinkled human prune.

“Yes, I don’t like it.  It’s ugly!,” cried Butta.

“Be in love with your life, every detail of it.”
― Jack Kerouac

“Well, quit your belly aching if you don’t like it get rid of it,  Change it!”

“I can’t I was born with it!” stammered Butta.

The old man spoke with rusty nails in his voice, “Course you can fix it.  I’ll show you how!”

Within the time it takes to forget you are wrong: The old man had smacked Butta in the head.  So hard was the hit that the room began to seem very large.  Indeed it did for both the old man and Butta were shrinking.  Shriveling up until they both were the size of dust bunnies.

And as they say, the rest is her story!

Butta and the old man had managed to find their way into Towanda’s borrowed bedroom.  Clutching onto an afghan made by Butta’s Aunt Rhoda the two managed to find their way to Towanda’s right ear.

“Come inside, I’ll show you the rooms!” announced the old man.

Shitty, shitty, bang, bang was all that Butta heard.  Noises from a broken down factory or something similar to a meltdown had been all she could surmise.

The first door, however, seemed like a pottery palace.  Quiet and smoothly run.  It smelled of candy and gum.  On the front of the door had been a sign:

Kind Thoughts.

The next door down had seemed even more delightful;  birds were chirping, waterfalls were gushing and laughter seemed to be the product it produced.  On the front of that door there had been a sign, as well:

Happy Thoughts.

“Wait, I see something and I smell an odd aroma!” quivered Butta.

Sure enough several footsteps down the hall there had been doors with caution tape and hazards signs posted on them.  The smell was rancid yet there had been no noise.  Not a sound coming from within the barren doorways.

‘Could this factory be shut down’ Butta thought to herself.

The old man had reached out to turn the knob on the first unforgiving door.  A door with a sign that said:

Selfish Thoughts.

With a single motion the door had willed itself open.   Cobwebs, dead spiders and dust had covered what once was a room.  The other doors in this hallway seemed all the same: dark, dusky and ugly!

“How different from the rooms in your factory, Butta.  All the rooms filled with good thoughts were vacant and covered with slime.  The rooms of bad thoughts were running with impeccable order!” asserted the old man.

“No wonder I’m such an ass,” proclaimed Butta.  “I had been manufacturing such bad thoughts!”

It is told by the townsfolk that Butta fell back into a deep sleep that night.  She somehow arose back in her bed with her parent’s concerned faces peering down.

“Where is the old man,” cried Butta.

Calming her with loving words her parents told her she must have had a nightmare for there was no old man.

Later that year, Butta and Towanda had started their own factory.  A makeshift treehouse made of well wishes and dreams.  They encouraged all who wandered to not be lost.  They produced joy by giving back what they so freely had been given: laughter