William Burroughs Conversation continues – (Conclusion)

William S Burroughs – photo by Allen Ginsberg

The transcription of a 1985 panel conversation at Naropa featuring Allen Ginsberg and Gregory Corso interviewing William S Burroughs concludes today. For the beginning of this conversation – see here

AG: We have time for three more minutes of question-and -answer.  Michael (sic)?

Q:  Where’s Peter) (Orlovsky)?

AG: Peter is in Karme Choling.  (Tail of the Tiger) meditating, doing a mantra practice.

Q: Real quick.  Bill, when you came back to edit Junkie with Allen in ’51?

AG: “53 – No, he didn’t come back, that was done by mail.

Q: Oh,  (it) was by mail.

AG:  Junkie..  yeah.

Q: But.. You’d actually said that Bill came back to you for a short time..

AG: 1953,  Fall, for editing Yage Letters.

Q:  Oh that’s it.

AG: Yeah.

Q:  My question was you had jumped bail for a heroin bust and..

WSB: Oh my god, that’s gone years ago, you see there was a nolle prosequi anyway.
You see, I was in Mexico City and I had a lawyer, so they could never extradite you, and I called my lawyer, and he said, “Well, I’d advise you to stay where you are, not come back”. And he said, “I don’t think they’re going to look for you at all”.  And when the case came up, it was nolle prosequi, which means the prosecution said “drop it”.

GC: Drop it.

AG: Where was this case tho’, Bill?

WSB: In New Orleans.

AG: Oh.

WSB: In New Orleans, It was just a possession case, a small amount, well, the possession of about three caps of heroin, not the..

AG: What year was that?  (19)48?

WSB: Yeah, around in there.

AG: Well that would be six years later, five years later, I think.

WSB: No it was.. it was a small case  – but it was a felony at that time.

GC: Ok, hey, what would are we going to do now?

AG: There’s a movie, I think.

GC:  Let’s go then. You know what? I didn’’t get one shot!

AG: Is Randy (Roark) here?

Q: I have a quick question.  Gregory?

GC: Oh, he’s giving me a shot!

Q:  Why do you say that you’re not going to die?

GC:  Why do I say I’m not going to die?

WSB: He will live forever in the mens of minds!

GC: No that aint it.

WSB: The minds of men

AG: the minds of men,  the minds of mind..

AG: Is Randy here?

GC: That is not it – I’m not gonna die because I’m not gonna know it.

WSB: So you won’t be there when you die?

GC:  I won’t be here when I’m gone.

WSB: Well exactly.

AG: Randy now has an announcement as to what the next major (part) of the procedure is… {tape ends]

[Audio for the above can be heard here, beginning at approximately thirty-two minutes in and concluding at the end of the tape]

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