Best 29 of Beat generation quotes - MyQuotes
And the Hippos were boiled in their tanks!
Hunter S. Thompson
Coming of age in a fascist police state will not be a barrel of fun for anybody, much less for people like me, who are not inclined to suffer Nazis gladly and feel only contempt for the cowardly flag-suckers who would gladly give up their outdated freedom to live for the mess of pottage they have been conned into believing will be freedom from fear. Ho ho ho. Let's not get carried away here. Freedom was yesterday in this country. Its value has been discounted. The only freedom we truly crave today is freedom from Dumbness. Nothing else matters.
...unlike the Lost Generation, which was occupied with the loss of faith, the Beat Generation is becoming more and more occupied with the need for it.
The Beats and the Pranksters showed us different ways of opting out of society. They were both the personification of countercultural movements. The Beats were trying to change literature, and the Pranksters were trying to change the people and the country. Kesey, in fact, was his own cultural revolution, striving to keep the upbeat, freedom-loving spirit of America alive.
And there's my poor endeavoring human desk at which I sit so often during the day, facing south, the papers and pencils and the coffee cup with sprigs of alpine fir and a weird orchid of the heights wiltable in one day– My Beechnut gum, my tobacco pouch, dusts, pitiful pulp magazines I have to read, view south to all those snowy majesties– The waiting is long. On Starvation Ridge little sticks Are trying to grow.
It’s almost as if Bronson, Ginsberg and Bowie craved the freedom of letting go, of pushing their mind aside and allowing the vampires and demons and all the other freaks to run them so that they could slip away elsewhere
I'm alone in the sky where there's nothing to lose The Sun's not eternal That's why there's the blues Majestical jailhouse our Joy's in the Cage Hearts full of hatred will outlast my old age
I realized Jack [Kerouac] was deeply committed to writing. Kesey was just as deeply committed to living and experiencing the lives of others; for him writing was just a part of living.
I believe in order, tenderness, and piety.
The Beat Generation, that was a vision that we had, John Clellon Holmes and I, and Allen Ginsberg in an even wilder way, in the late forties, of a generation of crazy, illuminated hipsters suddenly rising and roaming America, serious, bumming and hitchhiking everywhere, ragged, beatific, beautiful in an ugly graceful new way--a vision gleaned from the way we had heard the word 'beat' spoken on streetcorners on Times Square and in the Village, in other cities in the downtown city night of postwar America--beat, meaning down and out but full of intense conviction--We'd even heard old 1910 Daddy Hipsters of the streets speak the word that way, with a melancholy sneer--It never meant juvenile delinquents, it meant characters of a special spirituality who didn't gang up but were solitary Bartlebies staring out the dead wall window of our civilization--the subterraneans heroes who'd finally turned from the 'freedom' machine of the West and were taking drugs, digging bop, having flashes of insight, experiencing the 'derangement of the senses,' talking strange, being poor and glad, prophesying a new style for American culture, a new style (we thought), a new incantation--The same thing was almost going on in the postwar France of Sartre and Genet and what's more we knew about it--But as to the actual existence of a Beat Generation, chances are it was really just an idea in our minds--We'd stay up 24 hours drinking cup after cup of black coffee, playing record after record of Wardell Gray, Lester Young, Dexter Gordon, Willie Jackson, Lennie Tristano and all the rest, talking madly about that holy new feeling out there in the streets- -We'd write stories about some strange beatific Negro hepcat saint with goatee hitchhiking across Iowa with taped up horn bringing the secret message of blowing to other coasts, other cities, like a veritable Walter the Penniless leading an invisible First Crusade- -We had our mystic heroes and wrote, nay sung novels about them, erected long poems celebrating the new 'angels' of the American underground--In actuality there was only a handful of real hip swinging cats and what there was vanished mightily swiftly during the Korean War when (and after) a sinister new kind of efficiency appeared in America, maybe it was the result of the universalization of Television and nothing else (the Polite Total Police Control of Dragnet's 'peace' officers) but the beat characters after 1950 vanished into jails and madhouses, or were shamed into silent conformity, the generation itself was shortlived and small in number.
we met one strange summer in a regular tangle of sticky webs you had the air of angels sweet but I-- drowned with the damned spirits in lava oceans fearing your-- foreign static frequency and grey-green eyes (I swear they are even if you-- think otherwise): storms calm ones, calmer than my-- raging coals, empty and dead you speak of souls like you believe always an optimist in pessimistic skin of ivory and titanium mesh...
During this period of his life, Burroughs was seeking a physical utopia, a place where he could live and act as he wanted with interference from neither official state authority nor unofficial moral authority. In fact, he wanted to live in a place where he was out of place and where consequently he would be free.
William Burroughs was simultaneously old and young. Part sheriff, part gumshoe. All writer. He had a medicine chest he kept locked, but if you were in pain he would open it. He did not like to see his loved ones suffer. If you were infirm he would feed you. He’d appear at your door with a fish wrapped in newsprint and fry it up. He was inaccessible to a girl but I loved him anyway.
The beat generation (coined in Playboy)
There are as many kinds of kisses as there are people on earth, as there are permutations and combinations of those people. No two people kiss alike—no two people fuck alike—but somehow the kiss is more personal, more individualized than the fuck.
Exterminate all rational thought
I’m with you in Rockland where we are great writers on the same dreadful typewriter
…of constipation of the brain & diarrhea of the mouth.
For invented gods invariably disappoint those who worship them.
I forgave everybody, I gave up, I got drunk.
He’d been toting it, and checking it, and packing and unpacking, all the way since fate was on the river - that’s how long - the Big River” - Fate Marable and his riverboat caliope (Cleo seemed to recall), who hadastonished the landings between New Orleans and St. Louis with the wild, harsh, skirling Gypsy music, and left there, echoing in the young and restless even as it dies off round the bed; to linger with them thereafter, in the pelting roar of November midnights and the clickety-clack of lonesome valley freights, until they up one night and go after it in a battered bus, following the telephone wires that make a zigzag music staff against the evening sky - some variation of that basic beginning could be told for everyone who jazz has touched and altered.
Now you're going East with Sal," Galatea said, "and what do you think you're going to accomplish by that? Camille has to stay home and mind the baby now you're gone--how can she keep her job? and she never wants to see you again and I don't blame her. If you see Ed along the road you tell him to come back to me or I'll kill him." Just as flat as that. It was the saddest night. I felt as if I was with strange brothers and sisters in a pitiful dream. Then a complete silence fell over everybody; where once Dean would have talked his way out, he now fell silent himself, but standing in front of everybody, ragged and broken and idiotic, right under the lightbulbs, his bony mad face covered with sweat and throbbing veins, saying, "Yes, yes, yes," as though tremendous revelations were pouring into him all the time now, and I am convinced they were, and the others suspected as much and were frightened. He was BEAT--the root, the soul of Beatific.
I am waiting for the meek to be blessed and inherit the earth... without taxes
He had a third martini. He looked at me intently and took hold of my arm. 'Look', he said. 'You're a fish in a pond. It's drying up. You have to mutate into an amphibian, but someone keeps hanging on to you and telling you to stay in the pond, everything's going to be all right.
I would rather go mad, gone down the dark road to Mexico, heroin dripping in my veins, eyes and ears full of marijuana, eating the god Peyote on the floor of a mudhut on the border or laying in a hotel room over the body of some suffering man or woman; rather jar my body down the road, crying by a diner in the Western sun; rather crawl on my naked belly over the tincans of Cincinnati; rather drag a rotten railroad tie to a Golgotha in the Rockies; rather, crowned with thorns in Galveston, nailed hand and foot in Los Angeles, raised up to die in Denver, pierced in the side in Chicago, perished and tombed in New Orleans and resurrected in 1958 somewhere on Garret Mountain, come down roaring in a blaze of hot cars and garbage, streetcorner Evangel in front of City I-Tall, surrounded by statues of agonized lions, with a mouthful of shit, and the hair rising on my scalp, screaming and dancing in praise of Eternity annihilating the sidewalk, annihilating reality, screaming and dancing against the orchestra in the destructible ballroom of the world, blood streaming from my belly and shoulders flooding the city with its hideous ecstasy, rolling over the pavements and highways by the bayoux and forests and derricks leaving my flesh and my bones hanging on the trees.
Democracy! Bah! When I hear that word I reach for my feather boa!
They were brought up in these ruins and no longer notice them.
Here I was at the end of America - no more land - and now there was nowhere to go but back.
Does kittykat know there's a pigeon on the clothes closet?