Thursday, October 5, 2023

Glowing review of Who was Sinclair Beiles?

I found this glowing review of Who was Sinclair Beiles? on Goodreads today: I certainly could not have asked for more!

Thank you, Mat!


An excellent 'festschrift' (or 'celebration'), rather than a strict biography, on the mysterious South African beat writer, Sinclair Beiles.

Beiles is probably most famous for helping Burroughs get Naked Lunch published at Olympia through Girodias, at a time when Burroughs was really strung out on paregoric and/or heroin. His most famous work in print is probably as one of the four contributors (Beiles, Burroughs, Corso & Gysin) of the now legendary cut-up compilation, Minutes to Go, published in 1960.

 However, as this book illustrates, Beiles is [sic] quite a prolific poet and playwright and apart from the above two works, much of his writing has surfaced 'under the radar' and hasn't been the subject of much attention by either critics or fellow poets and writers. Beiles is someone whose quality of writing is as notoriously inconsistent as it is hard to track down and read his books in the first place.

One of his books of poetry, Yeoville, for example, was only published in a limitation of 4 copies.

What Beiles has in common with Burroughs is their meeting in Tangier and in Paris, an interest in drugs, an interest in experimental artists and writers and also, interestingly, a regular allowance from their families which allowed them both to focus much time on their writing.

I hope this book goes some way to revealing more about this great writer to the literary world. His poetry and plays have been criminally neglected and underrated and it is high time that his work is evaluated alongside many of the other great beat writers who are already firmly and undeniably well ensconced in the beat cannon and annals of history (in particular Burroughs, Kerouac and Ginsberg).

Gary Cummiskey and Eva Kowalska have done a terrific job of compiling these (mostly flattering) articles on Sinclair and his art. This is the best introduction to a little-known artist.

If you can obtain a copy, I recommend getting the second edition which is revised and expanded and contains an excellent bibliography-in-progress of Beiles' works in print.

Read the original post.

Sunday, September 25, 2022

Raymond Foye writes about Who was Sinclair Beiles?


Burning the midnight oil with SINCLAIR BEILES, a wonderful poet who I always heard about, but knew very little about. A South African poet who lived at the Beat Hotel and was the editor of Naked Lunch + Samuel Beckett, at Olympia Press, followed by many years of mental illness which he often documented in his poems. Thanks to Gerard Bellaart for sending this book, full of essential information and many poems.

Originally posted on Facebook, 25 September, 2022.

Sunday, March 13, 2022

Beiles translated into Greek


A small selection of Sinclair Beiles's poems have been translated into Greek by Yannis Lavadis and published by Bibliotheque, Athens.

Sunday, October 10, 2021

Inscription in the first edition of Deliria by Sinclair Beiles

Inscription by Sinclair Beiles in number 82 of the first edition of 250 copies of Deliria, published by Cold Turkey Press, Rotterdam, 1971. 'Judy' is probably Judy Shaw.

The preface - a letter to the publisher - was not reprinted in the second edition, published by Small Spaces Press in Johannesburg, in 1994.

Thursday, June 24, 2021

A South African in Paris, Sinclair Beiles (July 1959)


A South African in Paris, an essay by Sinclair Beiles, published in the July 1959 issue of Two Cities, Paris. Thanks to James Pennington for sourcing and scanning pages.

Thursday, April 8, 2021

Beiles writes to Life Magazine


Nomad, Number 5/6, Winter/Spring 1960. "Manifesto" issue, with an Open Letter to Life Magazine signed by William Burroughs, Brion Gysin, Sinclair Beiles and Gregory Corso.

Courtesy: Demi Shaft Raven

Monday, March 8, 2021

Sinclair Beiles on Cold Turkey Press

 'It's weird that the cloaca of Central Europe is also the mouth of English Literature. May Rotterdam be blessed by every English tongue in all the cloisters of the English-speaking world.'

Sinclair Beiles 

Wednesday, March 3, 2021

Sinclair Beiles and the Beat Generation

 A new article about Sinclair Beiles has been published in New Frame, and Who was Sinclair Beiles?, which was published by Dye Hard Press, gets a mention.

The article starts: The 1950s were a tumultuous time for an Australian criminal and con artist called William Lindsay Pearson. An array of jewels was stolen from Brenthurst, the Johannesburg estate of the Oppenheimer family, founders of the Anglo American mining giant, in 1955. This treasure was, ultimately, derived from political connections to the apartheid state and the exploitation of Black workers.  ... more.

Saturday, December 26, 2020

Telegram from San Francisco by Sinclair Beiles and Annie Rooney

Published in New Departures, bumper edition, numbers 7,8,9 and 10, London, 1975. Photo courtesy of Jeffrey Ball. 

Sinclair Beiles, London, 1985

Photo courtesy of Raymond Foye


Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Two poems by Sinclair Beiles in the Insect Trust Gazette

 The Insect Trust Gazette, Summer 1968, published by Robert Bassara, Bekerley, California.

Courtesy: Richard S.E. Aaron