Letters of Note: Jack Kerouac ‘Burroughs Has Gone Insane’

William S. BurroughsOn the always fascinating site Letters of Note:

Early 1957, Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg travelled to Tangier to join William Burroughs; their mission to assemble and edit Burroughs’ many fragments of work to form a ‘readable’ Naked Lunch manuscript. Kerouac arrived early and, during a break from socialising with Burroughs, the ‘old familiar lunatic’, wrote to Lucien Carr and his wife Francesca in order to update them on the project’s progress. That handwritten letter — essentially a fascinating account of Burroughs’ behaviour in his prime — can be seen [here].

For related material — including other correspondence, manuscript pages and photographs — I very highly recommend visiting Columbia University’s online exhibition, “Naked Lunch”: The First Fifty Years.

Transcript here:

Dear Lucien & Cessa — Writing to you by candlelight from the mysterious Casbah — have a magnificent room overlooking the beach & the bay & the sea & can see Gibraltar — patio to sun on, room maid, $20 a month — feel great but Burroughs has gone insane as, — he keeps saying he’s going to erupt into some unspeakable atrocity such as waving his dingdong at an Embassy part & such or slaughtering an Arab boy to see what his beautiful insides look like …

Read and See more on Letters of Note

8 Comments on "Letters of Note: Jack Kerouac ‘Burroughs Has Gone Insane’"

  1. Hadrian999 | Mar 30, 2010 at 1:09 am |

    anyone who has ever tried to read naked lunch can tell Burroughs was a complete f***ing lunatic

  2. tonyviner | Mar 30, 2010 at 2:07 am |

    I've got some Burroughs on audio. They should call him Mumbles, I guess he has his niche, though.

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  4. E.B. Wolf | Mar 30, 2010 at 7:44 pm |

    Great link!
    Letters of Note is a goldmine.

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