Jack Kerouac Quotes (“The only truth is music.”)

Jack Kerouac was a legendary American author and poet who is best known for his spontaneous prose style. Kerouac was a true iconoclast who inspired others to break free from societal conventions and pursue their own unique path in life. In this blog post, we’ll take a look at some of Jack Kerouac Quotes on life and writing.

jack Kerouac Quotes

Jack Kerouac was born in Lowell, Massachusetts in 1922. He was the son of immigrants from Quebec, and he was one of six children. Kerouac was a bright student, and he won a scholarship to Columbia University. However, he only lasted a semester there before dropping out. Kerouac then joined the Merchant Marines, and he traveled around the world. 

In 1944, Kerouac met Neal Cassady, and the two became fast friends. Cassady was a wild character, and he introduced Kerouac to the world of jazz.

Kerouac was inspired by Cassady’s energy, and he began to write about his experiences. In 1950, Kerouac published first a novel called “The Town and the City.” 

The following year, Kerouac wrote a novel called “On the Road.” The book was based on his travels with Cassady, and it was published in 1957. “On the Road” was a huge success, and it helped to establish Kerouac as one of the most important writers of his generation. Kerouac went on to write several other novels, including “The Dharma Bums” and “Big Sur.” He also wrote a book of poetry called “Mexico City Blues.” Kerouac died in 1969.

Jack Kerouac quotes offer a unique perspective on life and offer wisdom for anyone looking to live life to the fullest.

53 Jack Kerouac Quotes

kerouac on the road quotes
  1. “Live, travel, adventure, bless, and don’t be sorry.”

2. “I was surprised, as always, by how easy the act of leaving was, and how good it felt. The world was suddenly rich with possibility.”

3. “Be in love with your life, every detail of it.”

4. “Great things are not accomplished by those who yield to trends and fads and popular opinion.”

5. “One man practicing kindness in the wilderness is worth all the temples this world pulls.”

6. “Things are so hard to figure out when you live from day to day in this feverish and silly world. ”

7. “Something good will come of all things yet”

8. “Life is life, and kind is kind”

9. “If moderation is a fault, then indifference is a crime.”

10. “Prison is where you promise yourself the right to live.”

best jack kerouac quotes

Famous Jack Kerouac Quotes

11. “Practice kindness all day to everybody and you will realize you’re already in heaven now.”

12. “It always makes me proud to love the world somehow- hate’s so easy compared.”

13. “Nothing behind me, everything ahead of me, as is ever so on the road.”

14. “Forgive everyone for your own sins and be sure to tell them you love them which you do.”

15. “Let the mind beware, that though the flesh be bugged, the circumstances of existence are pretty glorious.”

16. “I didn’t know what to say. I felt like crying, Goddammit everybody in the world wants an explanation for your acts and for your very being.”

17. “There was nowhere to go but everywhere, so just keep on rolling under the stars.”

18. “You’d be surprised how little I knew even up to yesterday”

19. “Happiness consists in realizing it is all a great strange dream”

20. “A pain stabbed my heart, as it did every time I saw a girl I loved who was going the opposite direction in this too-big world.”

The Best Jack Kerouac Quotes

21. “And the story of love is a long sad tale ending in graves.”

22. “My witness is the empty sky.”

23. “The only truth is music.”

24. “It all ends in tears anyway.”

25. “It is possible for the human spirit to win after all.”

26. “Offer them what they secretly want and they of course immediately become panic-stricken.”

27. “The closer you get to real matter, rock air fire and wood, boy, the more spiritual the world is.”

28. “I promise I shall never give up, and that I’ll die yelling and laughing, and that until then I’ll rush around this world I insist is holy and pull at everyone’s lapel and make them confess to me and to all.”

29. “Better to sleep in an uncomfortable bed free, than sleep in a comfortable bed unfree.”

30. “My fault, my failure, is not in the passions I have, but in my lack of control of them.”

Famous Jack Kerouac Quotes About Life

31. “I had nothing to offer anybody except my own confusion.”

32. “The beauty of things must be that they end.”

33. “Some of my most neurotically fierce bitterness is the result of realizing how untrue people have become.”

34. “I’m writing this book because we’re all going to die.”

35. “Are we fallen angels who didn’t want to believe that nothing is nothing and so were born to lose our loved ones and dear friends one by one and finally our own life, to see it proved?”

36. “There was nothing to talk about anymore. The only thing to do was go.”

37. “I just won’t sleep,” I decided. There were so many other interesting things to do.”

38. “I saw that my life was a vast glowing empty page and I could do anything I wanted.”

39. “No matter what you do it’s bound to be a waste of time in the end so you might as well go mad.”

40. “The best teacher is experience and not through someone’s distorted point of view”

Thought-Provoking Jack Kerouac Quotes

41. “Don’t use the phone. People are never ready to answer it. Use poetry.”

42. “They build their own Hells.”

43. “Life must be rich and full of loving–it’s no good otherwise, no good at all, for anyone.”

44. “Somewhere along the line I knew there’d be girls, visions, everything; somewhere along the line the pearl would be handed to me.”

45. “The details are the life of it, I insist, say everything on your mind, don’t hold back, don’t analyze or anything as you go along, say it out.”

46. “Don’t tell them too much about your soul. They’re waiting for just that.”

47. “Rocks are space, and space is illusion.”

48. “All human beings are also dream beings. Dreaming ties all mankind together.”

49. “I hope it is true that a man can die and yet not only live in others but give them life, and not only life, but that great consciousness of life.”

50. “When you’ve understood this scripture, throw it away. If you can’t understand this scripture, throw it away. I insist on your freedom.”

51. “So therefore I dedicate myself, to my art, my sleep, my dreams, my labors, my suffrances, my loneliness, my unique madness, my endless absorption and hunger because I cannot dedicate myself to any fellow being.”

52. “Maybe that’s what life is… a wink of the eye and winking stars.”

53. “For the first time in my life the weather was not something that touched me, that caressed me, froze or sweated me, but became me. ”

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