Thursday, November 29, 2018

Jack Kerouac on this date in 1959

Kenneth Rexroth

Today is Twofer Thursday: 2 posts about Kerouac on this date in  history.

We already posted from Jack's journal in 1965, but also on this date in 1959, poet and critic Kenneth Rexroth reviewed Kerouac's Mexico City Blues in the NY Times. Click here for a link to that review.

Rexroth was no fan of Kerouac as this review demonstrates. Rexroth introduced the poets at the famous Six Gallery poetry reading in San Francisco in 1955, and Kerouac described him thus in The Dharma Bums: "bow-tied wild-haired old anarchist fuds like Rheinhold Cacoethes." This was the event when Allen Ginsberg first read "Howl" in public; Jack didn't read but collected money for jugs of wine that he passed around while he cheered on the other poets with shouts of "Go! Go!"

Mexico City Blues and Kerouac have stood the test of time. Did you read any Rexroth in your college American poetry class?

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