Sunday, February 5, 2012

William Burroughs Birthday


[Allen Ginsberg and William Burroughs, Lawrence, KS, May 31, 1991. Photo probably snapped by James Grauerholz. c. Allen Ginsberg Estate]


[William Burroughs and Allen Ginsberg, rooftop of Burroughs' Villa Mouniera, Tangier, Morocco, May 1957. Probably snapped by Peter Orlovsky, c. Allen Ginsberg Estate]


[William Burroughs, Allen Ginsberg, 206 East 7th St Rooftop, New York City, Fall 1953. c Allen Ginsberg Estate]


[William Burroughs and Hal Willner, at Nelson's Diner, Lawrence, KS July 20, 1995. photo c. Allen Ginsberg Estate]


[James Grauerholz and William Burroughs, Varsity Townhouses, Boulder Colorado, July 29, 1985 c. Allen Ginsberg Estate]


[ William Burroughs, reading at Naropa University, Boulder Colorado, July 29, 1985 c. Allen Ginsberg Estate]



[William Burroughs, Tangier Beach, Morocco, May 1957. photo c. Allen Ginsberg Estate]


[W.S.Burroughs at rest in the side yard of his house looking at the sky, empty timeless Lawrence Kansas May 28,1991. But “the car dates it” he noticed when he saw this snapshot. (Ginsberg Caption) photo c. Allen Ginsberg Estate]

Superbowl today but we turn to that other venerable US institution - William S Burroughs! Today would have been/is Burroughs' birthday - He would have been 98 today. We'll turn you over, as we have done in the past, to the incomparable Reality Studio ("a William S Burroughs
Community" - the William Burroughs community) for more (plenty more) Burroughs resources (with a tip of the hat also to the William S Burroughs Archive You Tube Channel, and a wealth of recordings, and other (audio) materials, readily available, here).

Howard Brookner's 1985 Burroughs The Movie is also, it should be pointed out, essential viewing. Commissioner of Sewers (1991) is similarly available, in its entirety, on line.
The BBC 1997 Arena documentary, filmed shortly after he died, is well worth watching.
And not forgetting Yony Leyser's recent (2010) documentary, A Man Within.

Burroughs' Paris Review interview may be accessed here. Here's a later, 1984, interview.
& here's a link to the valuable Collected Interviews (put out some years ago by Semiotexte and now available from MIT).

& to conclude with, a little spot of vintage Burroughs -  here's his film made in 1966 (with Antony Balch) on the "Cut-Ups" (heads up to Brion Gysin on this one)



Rub Out The Words: The Letters of William S Burroughs 1959-1974 will be published next week (more on that next week), the follow-up to 1995's The Letters of William S Burroughs 1945-1959.

Here's one more clip of "words of wisdom from William".
Birthday Greetings, Bill, wherever you are.

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