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Jack Kerouac’s “On the Road” Quotes (85 Quotes)


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  • Go moan for man. It's the pathos of people that gets us down, all the lovers in this dream.
    (Jack Kerouac, "On the Road")

  • I realized these were all the snapshots which our children would look at someday with wonder, thinking their parents had lived smooth, well-ordered lives and got up in the morning to walk proudly on the sidewalks of life, never dreaming the raggedy madness and riot of our actual lives, our actual night, the hell of it, the senseless emptiness.
    (Jack Kerouac, "On the Road")

  • It was a rainy night. It was the myth of a rainy night.
    (Jack Kerouac, "On the Road")

  • Texas is undeniable...We were already almost out of America and yet definitely in it and in the middle of where it's maddest.
    (Jack Kerouac, "On the Road")

  • We agreed to love each other madly.
    (Jack Kerouac, "On the Road")


  • He has to blow across bridges and come back and do it with such infinite feeling soul-exploratory for the tune of the moment that everybody knows it's not the tune that counts but IT.
    (Jack Kerouac, "On the Road")

  • I suddenly began to realize that everybody in America is a natural-born thief.
    (Jack Kerouac, "On the Road")

  • It was my dream that screwed up, the stupid hearthside idea that it would be wonderful to follow one great red line across America instead of trying various roads and routes.
    (Jack Kerouac, "On the Road")

  • The best teacher is experience and not through someone's distorted point of view
    (Jack Kerouac, "On the Road")

  • We fumed and screamed in our mountain nook, mad drunken Americans in the mighty land. We were on the roof of America and all we could do was yell, I guess--across the night...
    (Jack Kerouac, "On the Road")

  • He seems to me to be headed for his ideal fate, which is compulsive psychosis dashed with a jigger of psychopathic irresponsibility and violence
    (Jack Kerouac, "On the Road")

  • I took a straight picture that made me look like a thirty-year-old Italian who'd kill anybody who said something against his mother.
    (Jack Kerouac, "On the Road")

  • Keep it kickwriting at all costs too, that is, write only what kicks you and keeps you overtime awake from sheer mad joy.
    (Jack Kerouac, "On the Road")

  • The bus roared on. I was going home in October. Everybody goes home in October.
    (Jack Kerouac, "On the Road")

  • We lay on our backs looking at the ceiling and wondering what God had wrought when he made life so sad and disinclined.
    (Jack Kerouac, "On the Road")


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