Jack Kerouac, On the Road

I woke up as the sun was reddening; and that was the one distinct time in my life, the strangest moment of all, when I didn’t know who I was – I was far away from home, haunted and tired with travel, in a cheap hotel room I’d never seen, hearing the hiss of steam outside, and the creak of the old wood of the hotel, and footsteps upstairs, and all the sad sounds, and I looked at the cracked high ceiling and really didn’t know who I was for about fifteen strange seconds. I wasn’t scared; I was just somebody else, some stranger, and my whole life was a haunted life, the life of a ghost.


The 25th of December

She protested that Christmas was special, it being presumed the birthday of Jesus Christ–or was that one more thing in which he didn’t believe?

“Um, well, it’s like this, Domino: I’ve always assumed that every time a child is born, the Divine reenters the world.  Okay?  That’s the meaning of the Christmas story.  And every time that child’s purity is corrupted by society, that’s the meaning of the Crucifixion story.  Your man Jesus stands for that child, that pure spirit, and as its surrogate, he’s being born and put to death again and again, over and over, every time we inhale and exhale, not just at the vernal equinox and on the twenty-fifth of December.”

excerpt from Fierce Invalids Home from Hot Climates by Tom Robbins