I told Colin I’d had an interesting time visiting Jack Kerouac’s grave, and he – Colin – said he’d been born in Connecticut on October 26, 1969, one week to the day after Kerouac died in St. Petersburg, Florida.
“For awhile,” he told me, “I had it in my head that maybe Kerouac’s soul had lingered around on the earth for exactly a week, and now I had it.”
“You never know,” I said.
Colin said that around the time he hit age 16, he decided — or his soul convinced him? — to hitchhike to Kerouac’s hometown of Lowell, Massachusetts, on a pilgrimage to the writer’s grave.
“But the city was just so depressing I never made it to the cemetery,” he said. “Instead, I keep going on to Vermont, to visit friends at Middlebury College. I lay around there for a few days, but I don’t remember the specifics of what happened. I think drugs and alcohol were involved.”
p.s. Later, I looked over my notes from Kerouac’s grave and realized he actually had died on October 21, five days before Colin was born. Which probably didn’t change what happened to his soul.