The irony of the acolyte

by DRM

Joe Strummer pays a visit to William Burroughs. It’s Clash-era Joe, in the late 70’s, probably sitting with Burroughs in his writer’s den on the Lower East Side of Manhattan.

Here’s the irony: Burroughs was an essential embodiment of nihilism and destructive violence. He lived the psychic quandry of Satre’s Stranger: unfiltered pragmatism disconnected him from the nuance of common emotion.

And Strummer was a romantic, a humanist and a motherlode of social frustration.

Here’s a classic quote from Strummer:

I nearly murdered somebody, and it made me realise that you can’t face violence with violence. It doesn’t work.

And here’s Burroughs:

When I become death, death is the seed from which I grow.