Discussion:
Jack Kerouac's poem for J. Edgar Hoover?
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Will Dockery
2013-03-03 23:42:00 UTC
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Ace Backwards wrote:

"...According to this book "Bobby And J. Edgar", J. Edgar Hoover had a
carefully typed poem by Jack Kerouac scotch taped to 'the slide-out board
next to the kneeehole in Hoover's battered interior desk.' Like a secret
little poem between him and Jack.


http://www.amazon.com/Bobby-J-Edgar-Historic-Transformed/dp/B0018ZOAHU

This was the poem:

"There was a man who believed that the highest you/ could get on this
planet, straight or stoned/ was to rock your loins in the loins of a
beautiful woman who adored you, whoul could share your/ madness and even
your (unreadabled), call your bluff, chase your blues, undo you. With that
you could play table-stakes poker with Alexander the Great." -- Jack Kerouac

Anyone know where this is from, or is it really an unpublished poem by Jack
Kerouac?
Dave Moore
2013-03-04 16:14:38 UTC
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It does not seem like a Kerouac poem to me.

Can anyone prove me wrong?

Dave Moore
Post by Will Dockery
"...According to this book "Bobby And J. Edgar", J. Edgar Hoover had a
carefully typed poem by Jack Kerouac scotch taped to 'the slide-out board
next to the kneeehole in Hoover's battered interior desk.' Like a secret
little poem between him and Jack.
http://www.amazon.com/Bobby-J-Edgar-Historic-Transformed/dp/B0018ZOAHU
"There was a man who believed that the highest you/ could get on this
planet, straight or stoned/ was to rock your loins in the loins of a
beautiful woman who adored you, whoul could share your/ madness and even
your (unreadabled), call your bluff, chase your blues, undo you. With that
you could play table-stakes poker with Alexander the Great." -- Jack Kerouac
Anyone know where this is from, or is it really an unpublished poem by
Jack Kerouac?
Will Dockery
2013-03-05 11:41:04 UTC
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Post by Dave Moore
It does not seem like a Kerouac poem to me.
Can anyone prove me wrong?
Dave Moore
Dave, I'm sure not finding this poem online by /amybody/ and in fact nowhere
else where Kerouac even mentions Alexander the Great besides the actual
Hoover biography, which seems to claim it comes from "On The Road":

http://books.google.com/books?id=RW9xER26nBcC&lpg=PA85&ots=vRWItTL8Xo&dq=%22rock%20your%20loins%22%20%22straight%20or%20stoned%22&pg=PA85#v=onepage&q=%22rock%20your%20loins%22%20%22straight%20or%20stoned%22&f=false

Or:

http://tinyurl.com/Kerouac-and-Hoover

From Bobby and J. Edgar:

"There is some suggestion that the scizoid Director was attempting to
conceal his overriding impulses even from himself. Affixed with yellowing
Scotch tape to the slide-out board next to the kneehole in Hoover's battered
interior desk was a carefully typed quotation ostensibly from - yes! the
Beat novelist Jack Kerouac..."

Interesting mystery.
Post by Dave Moore
Post by Will Dockery
"...According to this book "Bobby And J. Edgar", J. Edgar Hoover had a
carefully typed poem by Jack Kerouac scotch taped to 'the slide-out board
next to the kneeehole in Hoover's battered interior desk.' Like a secret
little poem between him and Jack.
http://www.amazon.com/Bobby-J-Edgar-Historic-Transformed/dp/B0018ZOAHU
"There was a man who believed that the highest you/ could get on this
planet, straight or stoned/ was to rock your loins in the loins of a
beautiful woman who adored you, whoul could share your/ madness and even
your (unreadabled), call your bluff, chase your blues, undo you. With
that you could play table-stakes poker with Alexander the Great." -- Jack
Kerouac
Anyone know where this is from, or is it really an unpublished poem by
Jack Kerouac?
Dan Fox
2013-03-06 22:39:54 UTC
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Post by Dave Moore
It does not seem like a Kerouac poem to me.
Can anyone prove me wrong?
Dave Moore
I agree, Dave. The first think I thought when I read it.

Dan
Will Dockery
2013-03-07 09:56:40 UTC
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Post by Dave Moore
Dave Moore
It does not seem like a Kerouac poem to me.
Can anyone prove me wrong?
Anyone can prove you wrong.
No one straightens seems for you.
The poem's provenance is provided.
Kerouac's writing style speaks for itself.
You must decide some things on your own.
You have to prove that it doesn't seem like a Kerouac poem /to him/.
It can be done. But we are going to need some sodium pentathol and a
hypnotist.
And maybe some Rohypnol.
For the fuck of it.
All this keeps reminding me of when Elvis had his photograph taken with
Nixon.

Kerouac near the end was so wildly "out of character" that a correspondence
with the Director of the FBI wouldn't be that surprising, but as long time
readers of Kerouac (including me) notice, the tone and language doesn't
really seem like Kerouac, more like a phony, like someone's /idea/ of what
Kerouac wrote like.
--
Music & poetry from Will Dockery & Friends:
http://www.reverbnation.com/willdockery
Dave Moore
2013-03-07 23:04:19 UTC
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Post by Will Dockery
Kerouac near the end was so wildly "out of character" that a
correspondence with the Director of the FBI wouldn't be that surprising,
but as long time readers of Kerouac (including me) notice, the tone and
language doesn't really seem like Kerouac, more like a phony, like
someone's /idea/ of what Kerouac wrote like.
Exactly!

A poor pastiche of Kerouac.

Dave
Steve Hayes
2013-03-08 02:28:05 UTC
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On Thu, 7 Mar 2013 23:04:19 -0000, "Dave Moore"
Post by Dave Moore
Post by Will Dockery
Kerouac near the end was so wildly "out of character" that a
correspondence with the Director of the FBI wouldn't be that surprising,
but as long time readers of Kerouac (including me) notice, the tone and
language doesn't really seem like Kerouac, more like a phony, like
someone's /idea/ of what Kerouac wrote like.
Exactly!
A poor pastiche of Kerouac.
Agreed, but it still makes one wonder who wrote it and what it was doing
there.
--
Steve Hayes
Web: http://hayesfam.bravehost.com/LITMAIN.HTM
http://www.goodreads.com/hayesstw
http://www.bookcrossing.com/mybookshelf/Methodius
Will Dockery
2013-03-08 12:22:20 UTC
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Mar 7Steve Hayes
Post by Will Dockery
Kerouac near the end was so wildly "out of character" that a
correspondence with the Director of the FBI wouldn't be that surprising,
but as long time readers of Kerouac (including me) notice, the tone and
language doesn't really seem like Kerouac, more like a phony, like
someone's /idea/ of what Kerouac wrote like.
Exactly!
Post by Will Dockery
A poor pastiche of Kerouac.
Agreed, but it still makes one wonder who wrote it and what it was doing
there.
The poem's placement, structure and sentiment suggests, to me, that the
Director may have written the pastiche
himself to himself, in homage to and in honor of a favorite writer; a self
reminder of something. If it were an original > Kerouac poem, it would
likely have been signed, framed, and displayed. The book title typed
under the name
suggests, to me, the source material of the pastiche. Were it an original
Kerouac poem, it's not likely Kerouac
would have typed the name of his previous book beneath his name.
J. Edgar Hoover as Beat poet.

That's the best possible answer I've seen.
Will Dockery
2013-03-08 15:04:13 UTC
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9:43 AM Will Dockery
- show quoted text -
Post by Will Dockery
Well if Kerouac did write the poem himself, it wouldn't be a "pastiche".
Exactly. And if the words and phrasing of the poem suggest Kerouac,
and can be found in On The Road, then it would likely be a pastiche
as opposed to a parody in that the sentiment conveyed, to my eye, is
flattering rather than mocking of Kerouac. Whoever wrote it liked
Kerouac enough to write it, and Hoover liked it enough to keep it.
It is possible that J. Edgar Hoover typed it himself.
--
Idle Hour Night / The Shadowville All-Stars
http://www.reverbnation.com/willdockery/song/15928895-idle-hour-night--dockery-mallard
Will Dockery
2013-03-12 19:13:52 UTC
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Post by Dave Moore
It does not seem like a Kerouac poem to me.
Can anyone prove me wrong?
Dave Moore
I just brought home Jack Kerouac's Wake Up, which I've never read but always
seem to think the style is not the average Kerouac, more of a "biographer"
atyle, so I figured that Kerouac could write in a style with no continuity
to his previous writing.

But now this review describes it that even Wake Up could be included on the
side of the Dulouz Myrthos, iow unmistakable wild old Jack:

http://thedailybeatblog.blogspot.com/2012/05/review-jack-kerouacs-wake-up-life-of.html

"...Instead, it was spontaneous prose meets esoteric obtusity. This book is
neither for the faint of heart nor the Buddhist beginner [...] While I'm
glad I read Wake Up, I'll stick with The Dharma Bums, my favorite Kerouac
novel, which Thurman describes as "the most accurate, poetic, and expansive
evocation of the heart of Buddhism that was available at that time" (p.
viii). In an "Author's Note," Kerouac describes Wake Up as "a handbook for
Western understanding of the ancient Law" (p. 5). At least for me, he partly
failed on that score, but it's good to read something challenging from time
to time and Wake Up certainly fits that bill..."

That still doesn't much make me think that the J. Edgar Hoover poem is
really written by Jack Kerouac, it reads more like something one of the
latter-day Beats would have written, in the later, a bit more swinging
times.
Post by Dave Moore
Post by Will Dockery
"...According to this book "Bobby And J. Edgar", J. Edgar Hoover had a
carefully typed poem by Jack Kerouac scotch taped to 'the slide-out board
next to the kneeehole in Hoover's battered interior desk.' Like a secret
little poem between him and Jack.
http://www.amazon.com/Bobby-J-Edgar-Historic-Transformed/dp/B0018ZOAHU
"There was a man who believed that the highest you/ could get on this
planet, straight or stoned/ was to rock your loins in the loins of a
beautiful woman who adored you, whoul could share your/ madness and even
your (unreadabled), call your bluff, chase your blues, undo you. With
that you could play table-stakes poker with Alexander the Great." -- Jack
Kerouac
Anyone know where this is from, or is it really an unpublished poem by
Jack Kerouac?
Halo
2013-03-08 00:30:22 UTC
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Post by Will Dockery
"...According to this book "Bobby And J. Edgar", J. Edgar Hoover had a
carefully typed poem by Jack Kerouac scotch taped to 'the slide-out board
next to the kneeehole in Hoover's battered interior desk.' Like a secret
little poem between him and Jack.
http://www.amazon.com/Bobby-J-Edgar-Historic-Transformed/dp/B0018ZOAHU
"There was a man who believed that the highest you/ could get on this
planet, straight or stoned/ was to rock your loins in the loins of a
beautiful woman who adored you, whoul could share your/ madness and even
your (unreadabled), call your bluff, chase your blues, undo you. With that
you could play table-stakes poker with Alexander the Great." -- Jack Kerouac
Anyone know where this is from, or is it really an unpublished poem by Jack
Kerouac?
unsure but it sure kicks ass
let us know what you dig
up please
Will Dockery
2013-03-08 13:26:29 UTC
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It's the best explanation I could come up with given the immediately
available data.
Considering Hoover's secretive nature and the speculation that he
maintained a closeted sex life, the poem may also have been authored by
some unnamed love interest.
It wouldn't be so far fetched that Kerouac wrote the poem (possibly even for
Hoover, and, *gasp* for the reason you state) except that, as a long-time
reader and follower of Jack Kerouac (including his later, last work) the
tone, the "voice" just isn't quite his.

In my opinion.
--
Idle Hour Night / The Shadowville All-Stars
http://www.reverbnation.com/willdockery/song/15928895-idle-hour-night--dockery-mallard
Will Dockery
2013-03-08 14:43:58 UTC
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8:26 AMWill Dockery
It's the best explanation I could come up with given the immediately
available data.
Considering Hoover's secretive nature and the speculation that he
maintained a closeted sex life, the poem may also have been authored by
some unnamed love interest.
It wouldn't be so far fetched that Kerouac wrote the poem (possibly even for
Hoover, and, *gasp* for the reason you state) except that, as a long-time
reader and follower of Jack Kerouac (including his later, last work) the
tone, the "voice" just isn't quite his.
In my opinion.
It doesn't make sense, to me,
that Kerouac would write a pastiche
of his own work at all, much less as a gift
to someone for whom he had romantic feelings.
Well if Kerouac did write the poem himself, it wouldn't be a "pastiche".
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