Archive | August, 2014


31 Aug

Where are you in the reading and what are you noticing about the characters and their travel? How’s California portrayed? Fairly? Embellished?

So much music…

28 Aug

… In this novel! In the imagery and in the people and transitions! Do you see it?

My Typed Notes for the Last 2 Sessions…..

28 Aug

8/25/14– session — “Piled” [thoughts, emotions, beliefs, urges…]

quote:  “Either move or be moved.” -Ezra Pound

word:  ethos: the character or disposition of a community, group, person, etc…

LIFE, there’s nothing in the still, and I should connect the discouragement from summarizing to lifelessness, “You’re not talking,” I’l say, “the author is.  In this class.. the power’s with the reader!”

you can sense not just the shedding of convention in his writing but just as well the urgency– he needs to get this done, this manuscript and others– death is on his mind

the writer thinks

the writer suffers

the writer lives

the writer writes, and writes until all’s lit, Lit–

 Not that there’s no concern, just an adjusted concern…

Plains, something new.. this is the newness that not only writers seek but we as Human being HUNTED; need, hunger for.. die without (passion and/or cause, a cause) 

This MS demands an intimate read as the writing is intimate, confessional in nature and sequence.

We consider Kerouac differently than other novelists, as a Beat, walking and/or writing to his own Beat.. [quote, pg 9, “My aunt was all in accord…”] She wanted him to come back in one piece, but what if he doesn’t, I think as the reader.. more on that later…

There’s a sense of being lost but for a purpose, to escape and to be free, away from confines of common modalities, clock-punching and such… [pg 16: “We got bored.  I decided to spend a buck on beer…”]

-pg 41..”We’re trying to communicate with absolute honesty and absolute completeness everything on our minds.” I see this as being one of Kerouac theses in this novel.. he as a writer and his character, Sal, aim for some sort of sense of togetherness.  Many readers can only relate to that.. we aim for Equilibrium, a Collective Equilibrium that defines us and binds all that we are, to our ideas and convictions as well.  This can not be assigned by an outside body, and much any outside body would like to.  We determine WE…

Dean:  Lost?  Found?  Reckless?  Mentor?  Or destructive character?  Where will he lead Sal (do you think)?

HW:  Read to/through page 59.. note in journal…


8/27/14 — “Pulchritudinous”

def:  ‘physically beautiful’

Look for beauty in this manuscript, in the writing, in your intimate read of Kerouac’s text.. where is the actual beauty, where is the intended beauty?

Characters and what they say to each other, their “relationships”

-beauty in people, places, things…

harken:  another word for listen (49)

characterization of Dean and Carlo:  changing?  Staying the same?

What are YOU, the reader, relating to?

-metaphoric mentioning, ‘the machine’ (49)

“very amazing maniacs..” How true!

-”What gloom, what gloom…absolutely great.” (52)

“I was itching to get to SF..” (56)

“Everything seemed to be collapsing.” (56)

What are we seeing in Sal’s character?  Do we see an evolution or a devolution?  And the company he keeps, what does that do to him?  Also, what I’m curious about, your thoughts that it, is the relationship between Dean & Carlo.  Yes, you could say they’re opposites, but I offer they’re more than that.  WHAT?.. would you say…

Another prompt, possibly for a paper in the future:  How is my interpretation of ‘The Road’ and being high on ‘The Road’ holding up?  What is this book about?  What’s the point?  Why read it at all?  Where are its universal points and promises and visions and therapies? 

For me as a reader, Kerouac is yes as I said providing confessional accounts of his years of travel but as well offering appreciation, a novelization of the moments that we often disregard.. they have meaning!  He’d say, I’m sure.  They add to our collective character.  That, very much, is beauty, a piling of beauty and of ideas and of thoughts that separate and free us from any body that wishes to hold and capture us.  Who wouldn’t want to be ‘on The Road’?

HW:  60-155

mandatory blog activity.. I will be posting prompts over the next week, probably around three.. please log any observations, thoughts or reactions to characters, places, symbols, the notion of travel, anything we’ve discussed or that you’ve noticed!  Please use your journals!  They act as the tablet within which you log all your these findings..

Enjoy your day off on Monday, of course, but please keep with your reading.  We’re already approaching the halfway marker in this book and need to maintain our collective and individualized paces.

Last Session’s Notes…

25 Aug

DAY2, 8/20/14

Session Title: “What’s His Story, What’s Your Story…”
Day’s word: demesne [dih-MAYN] — realm or domain

Quote: “There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.” -Hemingway


-What makes a strong piece of writing? In groups, come up with a list of traits or attributes or qualities that you all believe compose a “strong” piece of writing.. notice I didn’t say ‘effective’…

-Findings, but before we share them, let me read to you from Kerouac’s journals..
What does this suggest?
Is he obsessive or dedicated?
Does being an Artist demand a certain vulnerability or imbalance?

What’s Your Story? What’s that mean…???
Well, what you’ve been through, what you’re about, what you value, what are you habits as a character..

Read of his first pages? [if students have book, or if many or some of them do, depends…]
So, let’s attach ourselves to each word, each sentence, they rhythm it creates…
What is this narrator’s story, from what we can tell..

Your sources.. what stands out about JK? What do you find interesting? Why might others find him so interesting and worth of study, follow…?

In his writing, in ‘On The Road’, look for images, how he describes people, and where the narrator, Sal, is, what he’s thinking when there.. Imagine what you’d think if you were witnessing this, or participating…

Before diving into this book, consider the following: who Kerouac was according to your research or what you’ve heard about him, who you are and what YOUR story is, the time in which it was written and the qualities of a Beat writer (this will require a bit of research into what a “Beat” or Beatnik” is… AND, finally, how is writing sitting with you; that is, is it teaching you anything, are you noticing a consistency of any ideas or images or thoughts or characters… Your general reaction.

HW due next session: Read the first 7 chapters, write in your journal any notes or observations or thoughts; and type a reaction to the reading– a reaction: your thoughts and feelings about what you read; and of course, OBSERVATIONS.. your REACTION!

Kerouac Sources

20 Aug

After an evening run, I thought about some Kerouac sources that I found and still find valuable.. here they are. Please take them with a certain consideration, though. Yes, I find them valuable and useful. That doesn’t mean that everyone does…
Enjoy your evening and I’ll see you all tomorrow.


First page…

18 Aug

And away we go… What did you find on Kerouac?? What can you tell or determine from your research??? Can you relate to him at all? Do you like his writing style? Try to find a couple of poems and bring them to share with our group..


Away I…

15 Aug

It’s 6:29 in the morning and I can only think of the coming semester.. how do you prepare for a semester? What sort of practices do you have, if any? Or, do you just let the story unfold? Let us know, as we’ll explore this on the first day…