Windblown World

Subtitled The Journals of Jack Kerouac 1947-1954, the first half of this volume contains dozens of entries that relate little more than the word count that Kerouac had achieved while writing his first novel, The Town and the City, along with commentary on the daunting and interminable work of turning his vision into literary art. But sprinkled throughout—especially in the second half, which relates to the events and writing of his masterpiece, On the Road—are gems of prose and personal philosophy that illustrate why Kerouac is still read and revered by spiritual seekers and social rebels 50 years later. As Kerouac says, “Also, it’s not the ‘eternal values’ that worry me, it’s all the tattered moments thousands of them that fall like snowflakes all around our heads, all beautiful, each different, each also ‘eternal’ … but with no name. And they keep falling and falling until the purity of our understanding of eternal things becomes obscured in a snowstorm of reality …” Wine-drunk, stoned, wired and manic or hungover, depressed and longing for love and approval, the writer always holds to his belief that living life fully, freely and lovingly is a difficult but worthwhile experience .