This weekend Lowell Mass and LCK! celebrates the 90th anniversary of the birth of Jack Kerouac, who has been safe in heaven dead for approaching half a century but remains a palpable presence in this raindrop we call existence -- his bop poetics irrepressible, his youthful vigorous search for kicks undiminished, his vision intact, even in the middle of the holy goof which he understood so well and which is our all lot. Not bad for a guy who in his own way and in his golden mouthful of eternity reminded us that, as that good old Greek philosopher Empedocles put it, “there’s no substance to anything that perishes, nor is there any cessation of them in death.”
I won’t be making the scene this weekend in Lowell, I’m headed up mid-week for a panel on Jack at Barbara Gagel's art show. But I figure that, as long as all them in Lowell are having a great time ringing their bell in the empty sky for Jack, the rest of us ought to get busy and do something too, in our own way and wherever we are, even if it just means ‘rat tat tatting the pure pictureless liquid of mind essence.’
What I'm saying is why not let’s all just find a jazzed up moment this weekend, and suture ourselves to the beautiful, crazy, sad, spontaneous music of Jack Kerouac’s consciousness.
I don’t know, I think Jack would’ve wanted us to do that on his birthday. Like Rumi said, when you’re somewhere, you’re everywhere.