Dreamed c. Aug 9, 1953 by "Irene May" and Jack Kerouac
IRENE'S DREAM (Aug.9, 1953)
Francesca---a piece of clay---I mold it, it wants to come to life---it struggles under my manipulation---l try to tell others that it is breathing and wants to live---
Then it is Francesca dying, as they come over---My sister Bessie looks at her, she is worried about other things---I take the figure inside the hall ---it stops struggling to live---it is icy cold and rigid---I lay it down---
The nurse comes to take over---As I lay there I smooth the figure---I begin to mold it again and she struggles---I tell the nurse and she tells me to go away---She believes in her death, as I'm going to the door I see the figure rise, and as I go down the hall I look back expecting to see it walking but the people in front are behaving as normally.
JACK'S DREAM (same or next night)
ONE AWFUL CENTRAL SCENE, it's in the parlor brown and funeral and coffin-like, Gerard is dead in his coffin and all my writings are racked like candle flickers in a file box by the stuffed sofa in the suffocant gloom dark, literally writing in my brother's tomb---but it's the awful silence, the solemn ceremony of my papers all old some of them crinkled but all familiar and now-I-see objects of a destined meaningful TOMB of meaning laid out and racked for use and observation and filing in the room of death---and so as if I was replacing life and sex by writing and death, I----antagonistic, dual, doom---Relatives dont even have to be there, I'm sorta alone with Gerard in the parlor playin my papers---
There was earlier a dream of incest with Nin, no acts of incest but the understanding all night long that there had been incest and we should be punished soon---like when we used to take diving slides with the pillow across the linoleum floor at Lilley Street flat at 11 P M guilty time----
"Irene's Dream" is the only one by any of his friends or lovers that Kerouac incorporates into his Book of Dreams--and his own dream immediately after it seems to resonate or react to it. The plots aren't parallel, and yet both dreams contain...
Source: page 116 of Book of Dreams by Jack Kerouac, expanded (2001) edition, City Lights Books.
"Irene May": pseudonym; also called "Mardou Fox" in The Subterraneans.
Titles: Kerouac always capitalized a dream's first phrase as a working title, even if it didn't fit the dream as a whole.
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