Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Satori in Paris re-read

The edition of Satori in Paris I just read
In preparation for Lowell Celebrates Kerouac this October, over the last two days I re-read Jack Kerouac's Satori in Paris. Widely acknowledged as a lesser of his works, the novel still contains enough of Jack's spirit -- albeit a somewhat alcohol- and age-affected and therefore diminished spirit -- to keep a Kerouac fan interested. At least it kept me interested enough to finish it in a couple of sessions (it's not that long).

As with many of Jack's works, there is a lot to take in, especially with all the place names, historical allusions, and other references he so frequently drops amidst his prose. Don't look for the soaringly poetic prose Jack is known for in his more famous works because it doesn't make much of an appearance.

If you're attending LCK this October, it would be a good idea to re-read Satori in Paris in honor of its 50th anniversary that is being celebrated there. That suggestion is just my opinion and to my knowledge there will be no "extreme vetting" to see if you've done so.

Even if you're not attending LCK this October, I recommend reading Satori in Paris, especially if you fancy yourself a Kerouac fan and have not already done so. It's part of the oeuvre and is therefore essential reading.

Here are a couple of quotes from the book that you may have seen before:
Methinks women love me and then they realize I'm drunk for all the world and this makes them realize I cant [sic] concentrate on them alone, for long, makes them jealous, and I'm a fool in Love With God, Yes. (p. 25)
My manners, abominable at times, can be sweet. As I grew older I became a drunk. Why? Because I like ecstasy of the mind. I'm a Wretch. But I love love. (p. 28)

Happy reading!

1 comment:

Brian H said...

Nice! And good advice on the re-read. And that I drink for "ecstasy of the mind" is some honest-to-goodness truth.

Also recommended — the unfinished "Pic" that is often published with "Satori" — both underappreciated Jack works.

Way to go pointing the spotlight back this way!