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At A Big "Swenson" Party

Dreamed mid-Sept? 1953 by Jack Kerouac

photo of writer Jack Kerouac

AT A BIG "SWENSON" PARTY in his huge complicated hard-to-find-your-way-around apartments, there's been a weekend, drinking---

We've gone down the street of some mixed-up California town (Los Altos!) and saw a colored girl across the street, wellknown, to whom one of our party called,"Come on over Joo Jee!"--and she derisively said no, with a remark, waving, going on alone, the colored guy in our party emphatically saying to me "You should know Joo Jee, you really should know her---she's something---"

---and later the big banquet for everybody---hysterical eaters---l start in the kitchen with tidbits on the table, toast butter and crisp in a dish on a side board, various crumbs en route in the livingroom, ending up in the parlor where people are standing or sitting around in various attitudes of wellfedness, not saying much, picking their teeth, drinking black coffee, or port, or Scotch---

l see a lovely pecan pie in the middle of the diningroom table and take a knife to cut a piece, which brings it to the attention of everyone else so that when I wake up we've all slowly silently stepped up a tempo at the pie, cutting, lifting pieces, dropping them, hands mixing and clashing and sweating as at gold, hands trembling in growing hunger as the more Swenson morsels are laid out and the better, the hungrier more desperate the dark voracious guests fighting now to freeload at the curious pecan pie "l discovered"---but the whole dream filled with the gray indissoluble hopelessness like a stone ---an emptybelly 3-beer nightmare, alcoholically lost, grim---

--Jack Kerouac

Editor's Notes

Source: page 151 of Book of Dreams by Jack Kerouac, expanded (2001) edition, City Lights Books.
Date: estimated from sequence.
Paragraph breaks added.
Title: Kerouac always capitalized a dream's first phrase as a working title, appropriate or not; I'd have called it Pie Frenzy.

--Chris Wayan

LISTS AND LINKS: parties - food - nightmares - feast & famine - addiction - more Kerouac - Robert Creeley also dreams of insatiable Hunger

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