Published in the Fall 2000 Vol. 2, Issue 2 of the literary journal FreeThought, this article describes my visit with WSB at his home in Lawrence, Kansas on February 18, 1995, by far the highlight of my life as a devotee. It is an extraction from extensive notes that I made in the immediate wake of this once-in-a-lifetime experience, with subsequent associations & references. The “Burroughs retrospective” issue of FreeThought containing this article, along with pieces by James Grauerholz, Charles & Pamela Plymell, Anne Waldman, Jeffrey Weinberg & others, is available for purchase at TMB.
Published in the Fall, 1997 Issue 9 of the literary journal Dharma Beat, this is an obituary-tribute that I wrote very soon after WSB’s death, a manifestation of my fresh grieving & deep appreciation for the subject. As published, & reproduced here, the piece is truncated, concluding after an incomplete brief biography that reaches through only the early period of his long & eventful life. I think it is most significant in conveying my immediate shock & sadness, which I’m sure spoke for many others, at the passing of this giant of American letters. The issue of Dharma Beat containing this article is available for purchase at TMB, along with other numbers.
This recent article was written by my great friend Karl Pohrt, the legendary former bookseller, journalist & all-around revered icon of Ann Arbor, the University of Michigan & beyond. Published during late 2009 in print & on line in annarbor.com, the sign-of-the-times successor to our late lamented local daily newspaper, The Ann Arbor News, it concerns the publication of the 50th Anniversary Edition of Naked Lunch by Grove Press (available for purchase at TMB & featuring reproductions of the original WSB cover art provided from my collection), my interest in WSB & the upcoming launching of TMB.
I wrote this densely footnoted (61, count ’em, 61!) essay during 1992-3. It focuses on a passage right in the middle of Kerouac’s On the Road text as first published in 1957, where the author (“Sal Paradise”), along with Neal Cassady (“Dean Moriarty”) visits with William S. Burroughs (“Old Bull Lee”) & his family in Algiers, LA just outside New Orleans in early 1949. A close reading of this passage condenses & anticipates most of the significant themes of WSB’s life & work. Fine First Editions of many of the biographical & critical works sited are available in the initial inventory of TMB. To read this essay you must have Adobe Reader and click on this link: Kerouac Meets Burroughs On the Road
We were initiated into the world of book fairs at the Ann Arbor Antiquarian Book Fair on May 16, & were approached by Domenica Trevor, a journalist for the local online journal annarborchronicle.com who dug our site. She visited our headquarters & interviewed me at length. While perusing our offerings she seized on a very rare gem & purchased it on the spot as a gift for her husband. A photographer from the journal came over at another time & took photos of your devoted Curator, two of which are included in the article which first appeared on June 26. If I may say so myself, Ms. Trevor crafted a wonderful piece, culled from a long recorded interview. Read all about it…. http://annarborchronicle.com/2010/06/26/column-book-fare-7/