Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 451

Jack Kerouac, St Petersburg, Florida ca.1960’s – color photograph amongst a collection of 15 photographs personally owned by Kerouac and coming up for auction

Jack Kerouac’s last typewriter, his personal Smith-Corona, used to compose and type Vanity of Duluoz, written in 1967 and published the following year

Jack Kerouac, from a letter, May 22, 1967, to novelist and friend John Clellon Holmes (“Declare” is Holmes’ memoir, Nothing More To Declare (1967), “Legman” is the cultural critic and folklorist, Gershon Legman. Kerouac writes of working on Vanity of Duluoz and purchasing the new typewriter

Allen Ginsberg – postcard to Jack Kerouac, 22nd August, 1961 (included in the upcoming Kerouac auction -“% Amer Express Athens Greece, 22 Aug 1961 – Dear Jack -Got your letter – Peter (Orlovsky) is in Istanbul, Gregory (Corso) and Bill (Burroughs) in London, I’m going alone to see Parthenon and Sphinx, and meet Peter later in India – Bill now seems cold cosmic Zenmaster, is amazing, will be in States in Sept. with (Timothy) Leary at Harvard – Peter gone alone to solitude – me same. I’ll write you – huge mad magic paranoid season 3 months here in Tangier – everybody older wiser sadder – I leave tomorrow by $60 boat to Athens – I’ll write from there – all’s well – Maybe man is mutating fast, that’s Bill’s idea – Thinks words are dead – I’m dead – Free –  Love Allen” – Meet me in India? Sure!”

The upcoming auction, announced last week (scheduled for February 26) by University Archives, of Jack Kerouac’s 1967 Smith-Corona typewriter (one of Ernest Hemingway’s typewriters is up for auction too!), took us somewhat by surprise. The estimated sales price, according to the auction house, could be as much as $20,000. Not only his typewriter but a batch of other items (from Kerouac’s last home in St. Petersburg, Florida) will go under the hammer, and, furthermore, the balance of the estate”, University Archives announces, “will be sold over the course of several sales in winter and spring of 2020”. One wonders what other items will be featured. Certainly, this first gathering is a strange mix. Aside from some photos and the postcard from Allen (see above),  going on sale are Kerouac’s 1958 Zenith TV set (estimated value $500 – $600), his Polaroid Land Camera (estimated at $400 – $500), his trusty, well-used reading lamp ($200 – $300), a box of his art supplies ($500 – $600), and, perhaps, strangest of all, his personal machete (sic) ($300 – $400)

and a number of his books (Shakespeare, Confucius, Freud, Dostoevsky), and a copy, from his own collection, first edition, of On The Road 

For the full array of all the Kerouac items – see here 

Allen postcards, Allen notes, Allen’s spider-scrawl. We’re grateful to Brant Shapiro (and to Our Allen where it first appeared) for sharing this:

Brant Shapiro comments: “Back page of a note that Allen left me on 10/17/90. I was helping to clean up Peter’s apartment and at the same time taking English Lit Classes at NYU. When I mentioned to Allen that I was probably going to write a paper on Shelley this was his response. Not a lot of detail, but I love that he wrote about Kerouac & Sebastian Sampas.”

Here’s another gem from Shapiro – a signed edition of a German Herbert Huncke title (“My favorite Herbert Huncke inscription”)

 Naropa Summer Session 2020 announced  (for more on the Summer Writing Program see here)

Valentine’s Day. We always like to spotlight on the Allen Ginsberg Project this poem (“Song” (“the weight of the world”))  – tho’ not forgetting from an earlier, more formal Allen Ginsberg – this one – or even this

The Poetry Center at Passaic County Community College (PCCC) in Paterson, New Jersey, sponsors of the annual Allen Ginsberg Poetry Award, (and its long-time director, ), celebrated their 40th anniversary earlier this month – “I think Allen Ginsberg would be happy”, she proudly declares to the assembly of well-wishers. Yes, we think that he would.

One comment

  1. Selling a machete is one thing, but getting rid of family photos is quite sad. Seems like a hatchet job, the certificate of authenticity says Kerouac is known as the writer of “The Big Sur” and Sampas is the “executer” of the estate.

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